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Thread: Central NI speeders beware!

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    MotherBear's Avatar
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    Default Central NI speeders beware!

    46,000 speeding tickets in year for central North Island
    12 December 2006
    By MICHAEL CUMMINGS

    Central District police are the best in the country at catching speedsters, and it's costing motorists millions. Motorists in the region were issued with more speeding tickets than in any other police district during the past financial year, forking out more than $5.6 million in fines.

    A total of 46,524 tickets were issued 11,000 more than the second-most ticketed region. An average of 26,112 tickets were handed out across the country's 12 police districts. But there is some good news. The number of speeding tickets issued in the Central region and in the rest of New Zealand is falling.

    While the Government reaped more than $41 million from people in a hurry during the past financial year, the total number of tickets issued nationally fell 16.3 percent on the previous year. The latest figures for Central District show a 9.4-per cent drop.

    National Party justice spokesman and Rangitikei MP Simon Power said the figures raise important questions about road policing.

    "What I'd like to know is if our drivers have a propensity to break the law more than drivers in any other region. It seems there's a particular emphasis on this issue in our region and I would hope that it's not at the expense of policing other offences, such as burglary and other nuisance crimes."

    Road policing in the Central District came under intense public scrutiny in July this year after two internal police memos, leaked to the Manawatu Standard, suggested officers were working to a ticket quota.

    One memo urged highway patrol officers "to get our ticket count up to ensure we end up the top group in Central".

    The other threatened officers not issuing "the required level" of traffic tickets with action that "may affect their annual pay increments". The revelations prompted Police Commissioner Howard Broad to issue a directive to all officers clarifying traffic-enforcement policy.

    Central District road policing manager Inspector Neil Wynne has welcomed the fall in the number of tickets issued "and long may it last". Insp Wynne is not surprised more tickets were issued in his district than in any other.

    "Central District is predominantly state highway State Highways 1, 2 and 3 run through it and it has the largest highway patrol. Other than that, I don't think there's anything untoward about the figure at all."
    Mr Power said police should be targeting roads where crashes are likely to occur.

    "If you speed, you should expect to get a ticket, but I would hope that the allocation of resources certainly covers all policing issues, not just a heavy emphasis on traffic.

    "We need to be assured that the bulk of these tickets have been written at black spots or accident areas, not to get numbers up to look better than other regions because, during 2006, we've seen some police memos suggesting this could be the case."

    The Automobile Association said police are targeting dangerous stretches of road and driving habits are improving as a result.

    "There has been a decrease in the open-highway speed and that may well be coming through in the drop in the ticket levels," roading affairs general manager Mike Noon said.

    "The police are being quite focused in what they're really trying to do, which is reduce the road toll, and we support that."

    - Manawatu Standard
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    Maggiemoo's Avatar
    Maggiemoo is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Central NI speeders beware!

    Hubby got letter through this weekend to say he'd been caught speeding down near Rotorua - 76 kmh in a 70 zone (no unofficial 10% tolerance here then - all to the good, but don't let Ken hear me say that!! ?::)) ?Fine is 30 dollars, and I think that's it, ?no points or anything - we are both being much more careful now as we were a bit blase about being up to 10% over the speed limit.

    We live and learn, and as my 2 year old would say, "dive careful mummmee!" (she loves a Kiwi song which goes on about driving carefully and don't dash or you will crash!!!)

    Maggie

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