For a few years the police have been reducing the tolerance for people travelling over the speed limit during public holiday periods from 10km/h to 4km/h in a bid to reduce crashes. Now they plan to go further and remove the tolerance all together.

Motorists driving anywhere over the posted speed limit could land themselves a fine, as police do away with the notion of a “speed tolerance” for the summer period – a move that could be made permanent.

Police announced their “Reach the Beach” summer road safety campaign yesterday, the first to come without a 4km/h tolerance since Queen’s Birthday weekend in 2010.

Commissioner Mike Bush said drivers needed to forget the old message of a tolerance for driving less than 5km/h above the speed limit. “Do not drive at anything over the limit. That is a focus for us.”

He said it would be up to individual officers to decide whether to issue tickets for drivers caught driving only a small amount above the limit.

“It will depend upon the circumstances and our officers have always had discretion.”

Mr Bush said drivers often set their cruise control to what they believed the tolerance was, for example 110 km/h.

He advised drivers to set their cruise control to the limit, or just below, as any speed above the posted limit would warrant an infringement.

The zero tolerance could be a permanent part of road policing, Mr Bush said.

“We’ll assess that at the end of the campaign, but I can’t see us changing our approach on that.”

Although police would not be following a 4km/h tolerance this summer, speed cameras will have a threshold of 4km/h during December and January.

Last year’s Safer Summer campaign introduced a speed tolerance of 4km/h above the speed limit for all of December and January, rather than just over the Christmas and New Year period. Police reported a 36 per cent decrease in drivers exceeding the speed limit by 1-10km/h and a 45 per cent decrease for speeding in excess of 10km/h.

Fatal crashes decreased by 22 per cent over the summer campaign. Serious injury crashes decreased by 8 per cent.

Whether it will work and how hard it’s enforced is obviously yet to be seen however regardless it’s a move that is bound to generate plenty of letters to editors of papers all around the country.

What’s interesting from that article is also that Police minister and former Associate Transport Minister says he believes New Zealand could soon be realistic in setting a goal of zero road deaths. That’s definitely a worthy ambition but to get to that point there’s still a lot to do. So far this year 266 people have died on our roads which compares with 228 this time last year. In fact NZ’s total 2013 road toll was a record low 254 so we’ve already surpassed that.

Perhaps one thing that the police should do is crack down on cellphone use with 20% admitting they still text and drive.

The Drivers Index survey asked 1000 regular Kiwi drivers aged 18 and older to rate 12 distractions and found that while 84 per cent of respondents regarded texting and reading distracting, one in five Kiwis still send text messages while driving – with almost 50 per cent of younger drivers (18-24 years) flouting the law.

“Despite being illegal, texting remains the top driver distraction for the fourth consecutive year, while reading has risen from second position since last year,” said Amelia Macandrew of AA Insurance.

“Distractions are a major cause of accidents, with 10 per cent of drivers surveyed admitting they’d crashed because they were distracted.”

National Manager Road Policing, Superintendent Carey Griffiths said that between 2010-2012, driver distraction or “diverted attention” was a factor in around 11 per cent of fatal crashes, and 10 per cent of serious crashes.

“That represents 99 people killed and almost 5000 people injured over the three-year period.”

Mr Griffiths said it was disappointing that despite legislation banning drivers from using cellphones being in place since 2009, too many people are still choosing to put themselves and other innocent road users at risk.

“Given that we are now several years down the track, we don’t see any excuses for people still failing to comply with this legislation, and police will continue to target driver distraction and other forms of risky behaviour as appropriate.”

I’m constantly both amazed and scared at the number of people I see using their phone while driving, especially through intersections and I’m sure most people have some pretty bad examples that they’ve seen.

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133 comments

  1. thanks NZ Police. There are going to lots of frustrated and angry drivers doing silly things over the summer because of this. EG of following car going at 80 kph who speeds up to 100 in passing lane is very common. Or result of trucks sticking to their 90 KPH speed limit and long line of traffic behind.

    And factually way more accidents occur below the speed limit.

    On the other hand the revenue gathering will help Bill Rnglisg get to surplus.

  2. More injury accidents are caused by a failure to give way or some sort of intersection-related offence. However, the police continually target speed (which does not increase the probability of crashes, it merely makes the consequences more severe.)

    Perhaps the police should have a zero tolerance policy for not indicating, not keeping left in multi-laned roads, indicating off roundabouts, red lights, give ways, and queueing across intersections too. If they simply looked out the back of their CBD HQ they’d see enough incidents in 10 minutes on Hobson St to fill their monthly quota

  3. Sorry guys, the evidence is pretty clear worldwide; reduce the speeds and you get a reduction in both the number and severity of crashes. Targeting driving at speed limits might be a blunt instrument, but it’s a fairly effective one. Slower speeds = more time to react => either not crash at all or reduce the consequences.

    Yeah, you can also focus on intersection-related offences (no argument there), but again they’re not the only way to reduce the carnage. Remember the NZTA “Mistake” advert? It was pointing out that even if the party not at fault had been driving a bit slower the consequences would have been a lot better. That’s how a safe system works…

    1. We already have generally one of the lower motorway /expressways maximum speed in the world. Now we are going to make drivers constantly look at their speedo to make sure they are not going over it,surely that in itself is a distraction.
      Why if there is evidence worldwide on speed related crashes do countries have higher speed and threshold limits than NZ which by this link below is a significant number of countries?

      http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Speed_limits_by_country

      1. You mean constantly monitoring your instruments while driving is not something you have learnt to do already? Back to driving school for you.

      2. Why focus on the motorways? We have relatively few kms of these and they are generally not our biggest safety problem. Which is why the cops also don’t focus as much on them as compared to your typical rural two-lane state highway. The higher speed limits you refer to are generally for motorway standard roads in those countries. A safety-conscious country like Sweden for example has 110km/h limits on some roads, but it has plenty more rural roads at 70/80/90k (as will we probably in the coming few years).

        Meanwhile we also have one of the HIGHEST urban speed limits in the world (or at least, relatively few <50k speed limit areas), leading to a fairly unsafe environment for those walking and cycling. So it would be nice if drivers at least stuck to the limit as it stands.

      3. Take the speed limit in the Netherlands for example, which is 120km/h. This in ONLY on the motorway. The quality of these are of a much higher standard than those provided in New Zealand. all other roads are 80km/h or less. City centres are usually only 30km/h, which is still 50km/h in New Zealand..

        And if you can’t maintain a steady speed while driving wihout constantly looking at your speedo, maybe driving isn’t for you.

        1. http://www.news.com.au/national/mazda-developing-future-models-to-reduce-the-stress-of-the-speed-camera/story-fncynjr2-1226945569700

          My comment only refers to Motorways and expressways not the general open road nor urban roads etc and was made because these roads are the ones where zero tolerance would be unfair. The Waikato Expressway ( which if in most overseas countries would be greater than 100 km/ hr) is the classic speed trap with lots of policing of this road already. What’s the bet that this would continue under the zero tolerance at the expense of the roads more ideally suited to enforcement.
          Your comment about driving see link.

        2. maintaining a steady speed without looking at the speedo is easy if you are driving on a straight flat road.90% + of the roads in NZ are not straight and flat.

          1. However as the majority of speed cameras and police vehicles are set up on those roads that are straight and flat, getting a ticket for inadvertently going over the speed limit shouldn’t be a problem.

  4. How will this effect the savings being calculated in RoNS BCR? Will it have an effect on the average national speed used in calculations?

  5. I wouldn’t have a problem if the police were consistent. I’ll stick to the speed limit if thats what they want but they can’t keep changing the rules!

  6. It seems a bit weird to be strictly policing speed limits that are so obviously wrong. Apparently doing 101km/hr on the Waikato expressway is dangerous but doing 100km/hr on a narrow gravel road with cliffs on each side is perfectly acceptable, and doing 50km/hr through a whole bunch of pedestrians in Auckland City is not a problem.

  7. Volvo are claiming that, from 2020, no one will die as a result of an accident in a Volvo car. . . including cyclists and pedestrians. Safety technology will be that advanced by then.

  8. Problem is that most of the VKTs are not on expressways, probably even moreso over the holiday period where people are heading to specific holiday destinations and far flung spots. It seems like the measure is targeted at people sowing down on rural and regional roads rather than our few true expressways.

  9. Related: Commitment to crazy urban motorway project helps to sink Lib government in Victoria [Abbott didn’t help either], Greens win first ever seat [inner city] on back of opposition to $18b East-West Link:

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-11-30/election-win-a-mandate-to-cancel-east-west-link-contract/5928776

    The final day of the Victorian election campaign became a scramble for critical bayside seats and a continuing stoush over the biggest issue in this campaign, the East West Link toll road and tunnel.

    http://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2014/nov/28/east-west-link-and-sand-belt-seats-the-big-battles-in-last-victorian-election-push

  10. I think that the Australian at least the NSW police issue tickets based on the speed limit. Exceed the posted speed and you get the ticket. That has been my experience and I think that Australians generally are very compliant with that.

    1. Having just spent some time driving around sydney while moving house, at various times and on various days I can say that the sydney residents I’ve encountered drive exactly the same way that aucklanders do. Too much speed, little indication and generally no manners.

  11. A couple of observations.

    Changing the rules, which makes drivers think, reduces road deaths. The reason is that drivers are thinking about their driving. A lot of drivers are driving on “autopilot” which is why they can do things like texting while driving. Even if they weren’t texting they wouldn’t be using all of their mind on their driving. The previous speed tolerance reductions have worked in reducing the road toll as they have introduced a change which has required drivers to concentrate more on their driving to keep within the changed limits. Whilst reducing the average vehicle speed limit on the road may result in lower energy smashes and therefore reduce the likelihood of injury or death to occupants of crashing vehicles, after a few months the number of crashes will be back at pre-lower limit levels as drivers will have integrated the new lower limits into their “auto-pilot” driving and they won’t be thinking about their driving. Sweden switched from driving on one side to other of the road. Deaths were lower for 3 years. After that Swedish drivers had got used to the new side they were driving on, stopped thinking while driving and the death rate went up to the old rate. The logical way to save lives would appear to change the side of the road we drive on every three years,

    I have just returned from Hanoi. About the only rule that seems to be obeyed on the road is the speed limit. Motor scooters drive on both sides of the road, Red lights are ignored, except if a cop is likely to be around. Roundabout are generally rounded anti-clockwise, but you can expect an odd vehicle to round the wrong way! Un-signalled U-turns can be expected anywhere and you always do left turns into rural entrances from the centre of the road as soon as you get up to the entrance, sometimes you might indicate. Urban traffic keeps to 50km/hr, open road to 60km/hr and toll-roads to 80km/hr. All these limits require full alertness as the unexpected must be expected. Fatalities per 100,000 persons is 24.7 compared to NZ’s 7.4. From these figures I would guess that ignoring speed limits and enforcing a “keep right” rule and intersection rules would have a far greater impact on Vietnamese road deaths. Logically the same would apply in New Zealand.

  12. One thing I would like to see is red light cameras all over Auckland as the amount of people running red lights is insane. With the 0 tolerance to speeding it will end up with speed camera vans on roads like the Waikato Expressway firing off tickets like a machine gun. If NZ is to adopt a 0 tolerance to speeding we also need to look at raising the speed limit on roads that are designed for it.

  13. It would be quite good if there was a rule that said, as a pedestrian, you had the right to flagellate the car of any passing motorist who was breaking the law. A nice big wallop with a long stick on the bonnet of any miscreant BMW driver. (cos the worst of them always drive beemers). That would quite make my day.

  14. One reason for the tolerance is to allow for unintentional overspeeding. With a zero tolerance a great money spinner would be to position a police car at the bottom of a hill and ticket away. I challenge anyone to say they have never drifted 1km over the limit in this way.

  15. Good move. Chances are that I will get caught out, but that’s my own fault. There are no rule changes here. The speed limit is not a target to be exceeded. People don’t have to drive at that speed and in fact they are required to drive to the conditions, not to the speed limit.

    1. It might be against the law to do 1km/hr over the limit, but that doesn’t mean the police should put all of their focus in that area. Its also against the law to run red lights, to not stop at stop signs, to pass traffic in median strips, etc, yet these are completely non-policed.
      The police are making every day people feel like criminals while people who deliberately break the law in much more dangerous ways are given the OK. You probably will get caught out, as will most of us, because it is very hard to maintain a constant speed especially over long distances unless you drive significantly below the speed limit.
      Is it really the people doing 101km/hr that are causing all the crashes?

      1. Sure there are degrees of transgression, and I certainly think the police should make judgements all the time about the severity of law breaking, and wave some minor infarctions off as trivial, but on this issue things have got away on them as it is generally believed that the speed limit is not the speed limit. I see this as an attempt to wrestle control of what the speed limit is back from custom to stated limits. And therefore a good thing.

        It’s like it was generally accepted that a little burglary is ok; you know, just a bit more than usual….

        1. The difference is that people don’t accidentally burgle people – and if you do (e.g. walk out of a shop accidentally without paying for an item) they are likely to let you off with a warning. It is very easy for someone to accidentally drive a few km over the speed limit occasionally, and now these people will probably end up with a worse sentence than someone on their first burglary who will no doubt get let off! Who wants to live in a society where normal law abiding citizens are constantly in fear of being treated as criminals.
          I can see your point about people using the tolerance as the limit and maybe the police could issue tickets to people who’s average speed is over the limit, but instantaneous speed is a bit harsh.

          1. Law abiding citizens who break the law?!

            It’s a limit, not a target. If you’re worried about accidentally going over the limit then stay well under it.

          2. The problem is that there is this idea that the law isn’t the law here. I still think the police should exercise discretion but need to kill the idea that they always will or have to.

            The problem comes with machines, speed cameras, that are unable to exercise discretion except via policy. This is the root of the issue and opens a whole other can of worms!

            Like what’s the policy going to be for AVs; I mean when is it ok to kill a pedestrian? When they’re Jay-walking?

          3. > The problem comes with machines, speed cameras, that are unable to exercise discretion except via policy. This is the root of the issue and opens a whole other can of worms!

            Yeah, and they’ve come up with what seems like a fairly sensible solution: the speed cameras exercise a 4km/h tolerance, and the human cops use their judgement.

            > Like what’s the policy going to be for AVs; I mean when is it ok to kill a pedestrian? When they’re Jay-walking?

            Well, whatever’s decided will be better than what we have for non-automated vehicles: currently, it’s usually OK to kill pedestrians, even if they’re not breaking any road rules.

          4. Nick R I doubt there is an adult in the country that hasn’t broken a single law in their life. I would classify a law abiding citizen as someone who doesn’t intentionally break the law, I think there are a lot of speeding fines being issued to these people for one off minor indiscretions while people who deliberately choose to run red lights etc are left alone. What’s wrong with keeping a small speed tolerance?

        2. This is a good point, a lot of people interpret the speed limit as the posted speed limit + 10 km/hr and are in the habit of driving to this limit. thus on a busy urban road you have the traffic flowing at just under 60km/hr which is quite fast.
          There are perhaps some roads where 60km/hr would be ok but in the present environment if you change the speed limit then everyone will start dong 70 So a zero tolerance needs to be established first and then you can adjust some roads up and some roads down accordingly.

    2. I agree with you 100% but my driving exam officer warned me several times to drive closer to the speed limit on a 60-80 kph road. if I wasn’t within ~5 kph of the speed limit i would get a warning.

      If people here are taught to drive like that no wonder they believe ‘drive to the conditions’ means ‘drive as close to the speed limit as possible’.

        1. Although you can get a ticket for driving too slow, i’m not sure how exactly they judge that though, but I do know someone who got a ticket for it lol. But if that’s the case then they hypocrites with the “not a target” message, also the signs look a little like bulls-eyes? haha. Also they HAVE to have a 5km/h room for error, the Australia/NZ law for speedometers in cars allow for a 5km/h margin of error. Instead why not just reduce the speed limits further in certain areas that need it, such as the city center, quiet suburban side-roads and etc.

        2. This isn’t just that particular instructor. It’s part of the test that, where practical, you have to drive reasonably close to the speed limit (within 10km/h). You’ll fail if you drive too slow for too long.

          But I think the way this is presented really confuses people. You have to prove you can safely drive at the speed limit during the test. But kids get this message from driving instructors of “stay within 10km/h of the limit”. Then they think it’s some sort of road rule that applies generally outside the test, too, and go about their lives thinking that people going slower than this are “breaking” that rule.

          This is a huge part of driving instruction: most teenagers, naturally, are scared of killing people with this tonne-and-a-half of speeding metal, and so they drive cautiously. They need to be socialised to be the typically blasé, aggressive drivers we (apparently) want them to be.

  16. Its funny how a message from the police to NOT BREAK THE LAW can draw controversy. Its not a race to get to your destination, and the exploits from speeding often amount to an extra 5 or 10 minutes savings over the course over 2 or 3 hours of driving. pointless.

    1. So lets say you accidentally walked out of a shop without paying for something, would you expect to be treated the same as someone who went in to deliberately rob the place? You wouldn’t mind going to jail because after all you broke the law?
      There always needs to be some degree of allowance for innocent people who make mistakes in how the law is policed and sentenced.

      1. Apples and oranges. The equivalent would be shoplifting, not robbery, and most people would return to the shop as soon as they realised they had forgot to pay. And if one didn’t then yes they deserv the same punishment as a shoplifter

        1. Yes just like a lot of people slow down as soon as they realise they are speeding – and if they don’t they deserve a ticket.
          I don’t want to live in a society where people who accidentally creep over the speed limit by a small margin for a short period of time are given tickets. There are lots of laws that we all accidentally break from time to time, they shouldn’t all result in an instant fine just because its the law. How about we punish the real criminals and the real speedsters instead!

          1. going back to the shoplifting example. If you exit the store without paying and there is a police officer watching you, can can tell him you weren’t really shoplifting but just forgot to pay. It is up to his discretion to do what he thinks is right.
            The same goes for speeding. If you do it while the police catch you, that’s unfortunate and you can try to explain you did it accidentally.
            However, you sketch the image that every time you ‘accidentally’ cross the speed limit you get a ticket. This is not true. Discretion is still exercised.

      2. They haven’t said they will automatically fine anyone, they said they have the right to pull you over if you are going over the speed limit. Your shoplifting example isn’t very helpful in relation to road rules. I’m sure people don’t intentionally set out to kill someone else through lazy driving habits, yet you would expect them to be punished accordingly. What about people accidentally driving past school zones over the speed limit? should these just be ignored for people to lazy to check their speedo? Keeping in control of your vehicle and its speed isn’t difficult, if you ‘accidentally’ creep over the speed limit you aren’t paying enough attention to your driving and are potentially endangering other people.

  17. It’s still an issue that people who drive at or just-below (97-99) the speed *limit* are tailgated aggressively. No matter what speed you are driving at, someone will eventually end up behind you. This is a problem, but it will require a cultural shift to change this. There are still simply too many people who feel entitled to take the road at the speed they want.

    I would like to see better enforcement of speed limits for heavy vehicles and trailered vehicles. By law these are restricted to 90, but when sitting at 100 it’s quite common to have a large vehicle sitting right behind you. A change to the law requiring the display of vehicle speed limits on these restricted vehicles (a small ’90’ within a red circle) would compliment enforcement by demonstrating their allowed speed.

    1. Are you one of the people that drive at ‘just below the speed limit’ in the right hand lane of the motorway / expressway? In that case you deserve to be tailgated; keep left unless passing. Otherwise maybe the police should ticket people for tailgating (yet another infringement they don’t bother policing unless you are speeding)

        1. Who’s to says your speedo is correct?
          Maybe they want to travel at 100km/hr when you are doing 95km/hr.
          Or maybe they want to do 110km/hr on a road like the waikato expressway which is designed to for that speed and take the risk of being caught?
          Either way you should let them pass.

      1. If I’m driving 100km/h in the right lane it shouldn’t matter. People shouldn’t get upset they aren’t able to speed.
        If I’m tailgated I usually slow down even more, just to annoy the heck out of them. People should learn to keep a safe distance, even if it is annoying to them.

        1. If I’m ever bothered by someone on a two lane motorway, I’ll try to drive at exactly the speed of the person in the adjacent lane, and not allow the speeding tailgater to pass. Fortunately, most of my driving is in a branded work vehicle, so I don’t do this all that often.

          1. If someone tailgates me I get out of their way now. I used to do the slow down thing. It doesn’t mater being right if you get rear ended because you had to brake you’ll still have a bent car and be involved in an accident.

          2. There’s no need to be militant about it! What really pisses me off though are people that tailgate me doing the speed limit in the slow lane. What exactly do they want, everyone to constantly break the law everywhere? Anyway, same douchbags who swerve their way in and out of lanes up the motorway like they’re in nascar or something. I doubt any consideration of safety, courtesy or not breaking the law ever passes through their otherwise unencumbered minds.

        2. If you were walking down the footpath and someone decided to jay walk would you deliberately block them from doing so? And if you did would it surprise you if they got a bit annoyed by that?
          If the road isn’t busy you should keep left and let others pass, that’s what the road code says. If you don’t let them pass then you are both in the wrong.

          1. I’m not talking about keeping right when the left lane is free.. I’m talking about overtaking people in the right lane with speed freaks trying to push me to move faster. If the left lane is free, naturally I’ll be driving there

      2. The road code is pretty clear about driving on a multi lane road:

        Where there are two or more lanes on your side of the centre line:

        keep in the left-hand lane as much as you can
        don’t use the lane closest to the centre line if you will hold up other vehicles.

        The lane closest to the centre line should only be used when:

        you want to pass another vehicle
        you want to turn right
        the left-hand lane is full with other traffic or is blocked.

      3. I wish the police would crack down on tail gaters. it isn’t just annoying but dangerous. If the car has to stop suddenly (say a child runs onto the road) it is very likely that they will get rammed from behind by the tailgating car. a possible scenario could be that the car in fromt manages to stop in time not hitting the child but then gets hit from behind and then still hits the child anyway.

  18. I always thought that the tolerance was more about the accuracy of the speed cameras than it was about tolerating drivers exceeding the maximum speed. Have I been wrong all these years?

    1. I’ve thought the same or at least that and legal president. Not so much a speed tolerance as a margin of error. I think a radar system is within spec if it reads 2km/h or less out which would become the margin of error for stationary radar readings of speed. Reading 2km/h over actual is anything below 3km/h over. bear in mind that the radar will be at its most accurate when it is adjusted and calibrated and when it is used on the public it will be in between calibrations. For rolling readings of speed the accuracy of the speed reading of the moving Police vehicle also comes into play. Speedometers don’t actually measure the speed of the vehicle but the rotational speed of the output shaft of the gearbox and then derive the vehicle speed from its relationship to road speed. The major weak link here is the rubber tyres connection to the road. When rubber tyres are transferring force they slip (slip angles for cornering and slip rates for either acceleration or braking) and all this before skidding occurs. It all means that the calibrated speedometer in a Police car can read significantly out depending on what that car is doing at the time. Speed cameras are set up with the radar beam at an angle of 20 degrees to the traffic flow. If this angle is set up too shallow the camera will over estimate the speed of the approaching vehicle. This is why speed cameras are usually set up on straight pieces of road. Road side setup as well as camera calibration affect accuracy. I think the maximum deviation for incorrect angle would be about 6.4% if you were driving directly towards the speed camera. In Germany 3km/h is deducted from any speeding offence in the drivers favour I assume to compensate for any margin of error. I don’t think the NZ Police can have a zero tolerance policy that ignores the margin of error in their equipment that is real. If they tried to prosecute someone for being 1 or 2 km/h over the limit they would have trouble robustly proving that the law had actually been broken and getting a judge to entertain such a frivolous case.

      1. The speed of the patrol car relative to the road is measured by the same radar device that measures the speed of the target vehicle relative to the patrol. An internal calculation is made to determine the absolute speed of the target vehicle.

        The conventional speedometer in the patrol car does not figure in this process.

  19. If the police want our respect then they have to stop treating the populace as fools. 1 km/h is not going to make any measurable difference.

    Also, although I can’t find it, I thought the legal speedo tolerance was =/- 2%? That means you could be indicating 101 and be doing 103.

  20. We’re definitely going to need more and better motorways to move traffic around the country faster. How many $billions do we spend to save a 10% travel time reduction between cities?

  21. Why are speeding offences detected by speed cameras exempt from demerit points? In AUS all tickets result in demerit points with x2 on long weekends. It’s very effective in controlling speed. There is a camera in the Sydney harbour tunnel and no one EVER speeds thru there

    1. Because a speed camera offence is logged against the vehicle not the driver because the speed camera doesn’t identify the driver but the car. This took a law change, previously the Police had to identify the person committing the offence. Liability for the vehicles speeding offences goes back to the registered owner of the vehicle unless they nominate the driver. Liability remains with the registered owner until the nominated driver accepts responsibility. A person could conceivably loose there licence due to the misdeeds of someone else otherwise. Think rental car companies and foreign drivers, driving on international licences. I’m not sure how that would work. The speed camera notice contains some weasel words to the effect that payment of the fine acknowledges that the registered owner was the speeding driver.

        1. Speed cameras can snap cars coming and going. Not all photos are going to allow identification of the driver. Facial recognition could be used now to verify whether or not the registered owner was the driver for many photos. I think they would need to neutralise some privacy concerns to do this and this wouldn’t force the innocent on threat of punishment to identify the not so innocent. The Australian authorities seem less concerned with the possibility of making innocent victims of their enforcement methods. They are using stand over tactics on people they have proof are innocent to force them to identify the guilty. There is no innocent until proven guilty in such a system its guilty unless you can transfer the guilt to someone else and considering the potential harshness of the punishment I find that unacceptable.

          1. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to require the registered owner of a vehicle to know who is driving their vehicle at all times nor do I think it is particularly arduous for owners to do so. The Australians may have stand over tactics but they also have a much lower road toll than us 5.2 deaths per 100,000 people compared to our 7.4 (source http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_traffic-related_death_rate) That’s almost 100 less people per year receiving a knock on their door to tell them their child, parent, spouse is dead. Seems worth it to me.

          2. When freedoms are given up it should be for something worthwhile. A balance has to be struck between risk and freedom. Applying demerit points to speed cameras would definitely be a step too far for me especially since the Police seem to be planning on ignoring the margin of error in other situations. Things do seem to move in only one direction and that is a more tightly controlled, restricted and regulated direction with increasingly severe and oppressive punishments for increasingly minor infractions. And no I’m not just talking about law enforcement but also other situations where our government has seen fit to protect us from our selves by extinguishing our rights. Police have gained what they asked for people have slowed down fewer tickets than ever are being issued for increasingly minor infractions so its time to move the goal posts and start splitting those hairs. That should do it. Zero road toll here we come.

          3. Someone once said about statistics “there are three kinds of lies; lies, damn lies, and statistics”. This is what happens when people cherry pick numbers to suit their argument. For 2013 NZ road deaths were 5.15 per 100,000 population, Australia road deaths 5.16 per 100,000 population. The more objective measure of road safety would be deaths per billion person kilometres. Its interesting that in both Australian and NZ motorcycle stats have been getting worse. Vehicle safety standards for cars has been steadily improving over the years for both the occupants and pedestrians but hasn’t really been changing much for motorcyclists. Could this be the real key to improving the road toll, built in safety systems in vehicles.

  22. The problem in NZ is not the speeding, speed limits in NZ are very low. The problem is the standard of driving in NZ is appalling. There should be no reason why cars can not travel safely over the harbour bridge at 140kph – it is after all a dead straight road most of the way. Trouble is we can not even trust people to stay in lanes and that is why we have a movable barrier. I would guess poor judgement is the number 1 cause of road accidents in NZ and that comes down to education. If everyone obeyed the rules and used better common sense – not overtaking when you can not see whats coming, not running lights etc – there are very few roads where the speed limits couldn’t be significantly higher and be perfectly safe.

    1. Yep, totally. We should have special high speed lanes on motorways for the amazing drivers, and then the other lanes for the idiots and trucks. Unfortunately the drivers of NZ generally rate themselves as amazing so the high speed lane would probably be the busiest.

      1. Feel free to drive through the 2.9m wide tidal lane at 140km/h and around the Pt Erin curve by all means, just try not to take out anyone else when you do.

        1. Nick, the amazing drivers of NZ are capable of anything. If Ayrton Senna can do it, they can too. It the slow idiots and trucks that are holding the country back.

  23. Speeding is not the issue. Yeah, and guns don’t kill people.

    In either case, we have rules around this, because society as a whole doesn’t trust people who consider themselves driving gods, and for good reasons (check your local paper for the latest road fatalities).

  24. I think you are missing the point. The problem is not the speed it is the appalling driving standards of NZ’s. You do not have to be Ayrton Senna to be able to drive 140kph in a straight line (my point about the bridge). 140 is slow and any car that passes a WOF should be able to do that speed in perfect safety in a straight line. The problem is 30kph is not safe if Kiwi drivers are hell bent on having head on collisions.
    I did not say there should be a special high speed lane on the motorway. I said trucks and buses should not be allowed to use the right hand lane as it slows down the traffic flow of traffic traveling at the speed limit (HGV’s take a lot longer to pass each other). I also said we should not allow overtaking on the left as Kiwis seem to have enough trouble as it is without having to watch both mirrors for overtaking cars.
    If – and it is a big if – we could educate NZ drivers to use better judgement then we could raise the speed limits and improve safety.
    And to respond to Loraxus – Guns don’t kill people – people using guns kill people. It is the same as speed. It is not the speed that kills, it is the poor judgement by the driver that kills.

    1. While I’m sure that an improvement in driving skill may very well manifest a reduction in road accidents, given that force is the product of mass and velocity, I think we can confidently say for the purposes of this discussion that speed does in fact kill.

      1. No actually force is a product of mass and acceleration or in the case of an impact with an object, deceleration (negative acceleration). It is true that an object has to have velocity to decelerate but the distance within which that velocity is lost determines rate of deceleration (and assuming initial velocity and mass is fixed) would be proportional to the force exerted. Now the kinetic energy possessed by an object in motion is equal to half the mass times the velocity squared. So if velocity doubles the energy quadruples. I think that may be what you mean. My understanding is that it is specific impact force on a persons body that tears apart internal organs that kills and anything above 600kg poses a grave threat to survival. The specific force at which the tissues rupture flips the switch from survival to death. That is by no means exact or definitive as it assumes one mode of lethal injury.

        1. You are right that the expression F = mv is not correct (force is proportional to changes in linear momentum), and I also mostly agree with your following points both regarding the physics of injury and the glib simplicity of the phrase “speed kills”. However in saying that, simply pointing out that improved driving skill can lead to a reduction in road deaths (the point made by the OP) make for a completely useless prescription as a policy. How do we improve driving skill? Education? Culture change? What factors should be changed? How long will until it takes effect? How effective will it be? Reduction in speed tolerances, for all its faults, offers a simple way to administer some form of risk mitigation that could itself lead to a culture change (I am of a similar opinion to the OP at least to the extent that I think driver in New Zealand are on the whole unnecessarily aggressive when driving).

          While I can understand that the phrasing “speed kills” fails to account for the many and varied factors that go into a crash, I still think its an effective form communication that conveys how one major risk factor when driving can be mitigated in a straightforward and uncomplicated fashion, and in that capacity I accept it. As you suggest, it would be a shame if this were to divert resources away from things like reflective barriers where those are appropriate, but I’m not sure that this is the case in practice.

          1. ‘How do we improve driving skill?’

            Of the whole city? That’s easy; ask everyone to self-assess their skill level, all those who say they are very good drivers get baned for life. That will get all the blowhard numnuts off the road. General safety level for all will rise.

          2. People tend to overstate their case to maximise the impact of the point they are trying to make and in doing so negate their argument. I think “speed kills” is an over reach and not universally true. Its a bit like those licence label holders emblazoned with the phrase “Slow Down”. When I’m parked in a parking lot its still telling me to slow down like any speed is too much speed even no speed at all. I much prefer “the faster you go the bigger the mess”. Universally true and impossible to refute.
            There was an attempt to improve driving standards in NZ by improving the driver licencing process effectively demanding a higher standard from learners. We didn’t always have learner licences, and restricted licences. Of course this only affects new drivers and does nothing to up skill the pool of drivers who predate this process. This will of course take a very long time to have a significant effect. Of course having drivers with carefully honed skills would be good but people are complicated. I would bet that a drivers sense of vulnerability is a big factor especially in young men whose nature it is to push boundaries to see what they can get away with. Honing skills to the point that a driver has a clear precise and accurate idea of what both he and his vehicle are capable of does nothing to address tolerance for risk.

      2. I hate the phrase that “speed kills”. This sounds like the ancient myth that the human body would somehow disintegrate if the vehicle they were in went over 25 mph. Speed requires a multitude of other factors to become deadly and on its own is relatively benign. Speed does certainly elevate risk both in terms of maintaining control of a vehicle and the amount of energy that must be dissipated in a collision but in terms of accident survivability it is but one of many factors that affect the outcome. For instance in a vehicle to vehicle collision the combine momentum of the two vehicle ensures that the lighter vehicle suffers a significantly higher acceleration that that heavier vehicle. The same physics applies to vehicle verses pedestrian. The pedestrian is so much lighter than a vehicle that the acceleration they are subjected to is multitudes of the acceleration suffered by the occupants of the vehicle. Segregation of pedestrians from motor vehicles and light motor vehicles from heavy motor vehicle would save lives it is just not always practical to do. In the case of a vehicle running off the road having obstacles on the side of the road that are capable of stopping a car dead will also dramatically elevate risk. Having barriers that deflect cars back onto the road and separate opposing traffic flows save many lives. Speed is an easy target, easily quantifiable and lends itself to automated forms of enforcement that are consequently significantly cash flow positive but it by no means defines total risk in any traffic situation. Of course we should have a speed limit and enforce it but recognise that it is a line in the sand and risk doesn’t change dramatically the instant you cross the line. Focusing on speed to the exclusion of other factors may ultimately deny them more gains that could be made.

  25. It’s always speed isn’t it, never the almost complete lack of indicating, mass tailgating, inability to remain between two painted lines, crossing centre lines on blind corners, not keeping behind limit lines, constant use of fog lights, traffic cutting, not following the correct lane through rounabouts etc etc.

    Heck, even many police vehicles seem unclear of how to indicate through a roundabout, safe following distances and follow the posted speed limits.

    Driver education, from my observations appears to be the main issue on NZ roads.

    Why on earth is there still no compulsory insurance?

    1. Motorbikes make up about 1.5% of NZ’s vehicle population and yet motorcyclists make up about 10% of our road fatalities. We all know that motorcyclists accept a higher level of risk in order to ride. However one thing that has become apparent to me is that motorcyclists aren’t given much consideration when designing safety infrastructure. Safety barriers for instance are not very motorcycle friendly particularly W beams. When a motorcyclist crashes into a barrier they will have either put the bike down and be sliding along the road surface or will still be upright. In the case of the W beam the sliding rider will either collide with the support posts or pass under the beam most likely the former with sometimes ugly consequences. The upright rider will either be thrown over the beam or onto the beam and quite likely wind up sliding along the top of it. The posts that support the W beam usually protrude above it and certainly out behind it and can do a lot of damage. Capping the posts and fitting an infill rail under the W beam adds significant costs so its not normally done even though this would certainly make it more motorbike friendly. The statistical justification for not doing anything is that the tree or embankment or post that the barrier protects us from is more likely to kill the motorcyclist than the barrier and death by barrier is rare. A collision with the barrier is more likely as it is closer to the roadway and usually covers a longer section of the roadway than the hazard it protects against. The barrier could be made less lethal to motorcyclists without affecting its protection of other motorists. At least one motorcyclist would likely still be alive after the weekend had the top of the barrier not had snag points. Speed was not a factor.

      1. “The statistics are stark: hitting a crash barrier is a factor in 8 to 16 per cent of rider deaths, and riders are 15 times more likely to be killed than car occupants. Barrier support posts are particularly aggressive, they can cause a 5-fold increase in injury severity compared to the average motorcycle crash.”
        Neil Greig, IAM

        “The issue of motorcycles and crash barriers is not concentrated in Europe, but has also been identified as a growing problem in the US. A recent study found that motorcycles comprise just 2 per cent of the vehicle fleet but account for 42 per cent of all fatalities resulting from guardrail collisions. From 2000- 2005, the number of car occupants fatally injured in guardrail collisions decreased by 31 per cent, but among motorcyclists increased by 73 per cent. Approximately, one in eight motorcyclists who struck a guardrail were fatally injured – a fatality risk over 80 times higher than for car occupants (Gabler,
        2007), and far higher than the European figures.”

        “ The very construction of certain crash barriers in common use, with their exposed, sharp-edged metal posts, the height and profile of their guardrails, their proximity to the carriageway… could not be more damaging to motorcyclists coming into contact with them than if they had been designed with that objective in mind.”
        (FEMA, 2000)

      2. “Both the upright structure of the posts and their exposed tops present edges and corners that concentrate impact forces, exceeding biomechanical constraints and increasing injury severity. Impacts with barrier support posts have been estimated to cause a five-fold increase in injury severity compared to the average PTW crash”
        (Pieribattesti et al., 1999).

        Full report here http://www.ors.wa.gov.au/Documents/Motorcyclists/ors-motorcyclists-report-barriers-to-change.aspx

  26. Hard to understand why there isn’t universal support for this. We need to change the road culture and this is a good place to start. Of course lots more needs to be done, but saying so doesn’t mean this isn’t a good initiative.

  27. Lets look at this logically… I’m sure a number of people on this forum have watched the bozo’s on Motorway Patrol or equivalent say they are only 2k over the limit when they were actually 12k over the limit (62 in a 52k area). Naturally the police said we will reduce the tolerance to 4k over. So people just drive at 104 or 54 instead of 110 or 60.

    If I was the police, I would not be telling anybody about any tolerance. If you exceed the posted speed limit, you run the risk of a ticket. Your speedo in order to sucessfully obtain a warrant must be between +-2%. Therefore the worst you could be doing is 102k with a reading of 100, or 51k with a reading of 50.

    Perhaps New Zealand needs more variation in speed limits. Although it is quite good in the fact that generally if there are a lot of houses around you go 50K and if its open territory you do 100 (of course there are always exceptions).

  28. The zero tolerance seems like overkill (bad pun)to me, your car speedo has already been wound back, (all speedo since 2006 must read faster), anything upto 10% is “ok”. My car indicates 100kph, actual 91kph, so I purchased a HUD gps. It’s amazing how many cars are driving below 100 without even knowing- and they want you to slow down!. Some drivers know their speedo is out, so drive a few k’s over the indicated speed to compensate, but your “compensation” maybe wrong, so you MAY be sliightly over the speed limit. With the zero tolerance it becomes a situation that you will have to take your eyes off the speedo to look at the road. The next thing will be to ban overtaking, I’d love to spend 2 minutes on the wrong side of the road as you pass someone doing 95 while you are carefull not to go over 100 to get past, I have seen it. If I drive down the road 98,98,99,100,99,101,102,103,98 for that second or two that I creep over 100 I will crash and die sounds ridiculous. I also can’t believe that if no one ever speeds there will no deaths on the road. How many accidents are caused by, failing to indicate, driving contrary to the lane , ie turning right on a straight thru arrow, etc, or turning right on the outside lane in a roundabout. If every one calibrated their speedo or use a GPS speedo, then you know your exact speed, so when pulled over by the cops you are both on the same page. Reducing the road toll comes down to driver training, car mtce, road conditions. Europe has far higher speed limits, but far better training. Fix the blackspots on the roads,defencive driving cources for all, tighter safety checks on cars might help better than caning a driver whose a manic at 102, but a safe driver at 100

  29. It is quite simply not possible to ensure that one is driving at a maximum of 100 kph all the time. No one has the physical ability to keep their foot constantly at exactly the right pressure, and not all cars have cruise control. That’s why there’s always been an tolerance of 4 or 9 k’s over. The result of this ridiculous ruling is that most people will resort to driving at about 95 kph to be on the safe side, thus creating a new speed limit without a law change. Frustration and traffic delays will result and no one will be any safer.

  30. For me the problem with the zero tolerance on speed is about the reason tolerances exist. The tolerance is there to address allowable accuracy of both speedometers on the vehicle and the accuracy of speed cameras. You could be driving a perfectly legal vehicle which reads 100 kph when you might actually be doing 102. This could just be due to tire wear. This policy will result in people getting tickets who were not speeding according to their own speedo. This can’t be legally enforcable.

    1. Todd your assumption is that car speedos are accurate, but that is not the case. From Wikipedia: “Vehicle manufacturers usually calibrate speedometers to read high by an amount equal to the average error, to ensure that their speedometers never indicate a lower speed than the actual speed of the vehicle, to ensure they are not liable for drivers violating speed limits.”

      Consequently you’ll find cars travelling at an indicated 100kph are probably doing closer to 90.

      One thing that does annoy me about the speed kills fixation is that the advertising should be focussing on building driver’s skills. The current intersection discussion ad has the driver of the car with right of way dumbly crashing into the SUV, a simple “look for the gap” message with the driver scanning for paths to avoid the crash would show drivers how to deal with the situation, not lecture them that an indicated 5 kph over is reckles (pun not intended).

  31. All this crazy policy is doing is turning people anti-police, and making the average mums and dads the target for revenue.

    It is not this group that causes the accidents. It is not people who travel just over the speed limit down hill or creeps within a few kms above the speed limit, not is it the people who start to adjust their speed prior to the posted speed changes – it is the people who WANT to and deliberately CHOOSE to drive at must faster speeds, and those who are full of alcohol or drugs that are causing the accidents.

    The only thing this policy is proving is that average Kiwi drivers are the easy targets.

    Why don’t the police pull their heads out of the sand and target the higher end offenders – that way will will get much more respect from the public, and actually do some good with much more support from the average Kiwi public.

    1. I have to disagree Phil. I fully support the Police in doing this. So you are mistaken to say that all people are becoming anti-police. Slow down and enjoy the drive, it’s really not that hard. It’s not some sort of game where the object is to go exactly ON the speed limit. Set your mind at 5 or 10 below the limit. Simple.

    2. Well put Phill, A few years ago a study revealed that gang members were something like twenty times more likely to be killed in a road accident. Were the police moved to target gang members? Of course not. It’s way easier to sit in a car looking cool in sunnies and pointing a speed radar and pinging people just a little over the limit. My car speedo reads a constant 5kph faster than what the speed really is and the poor and undulating surface of NZ roads mean it is a real mission to keep speeds legal, constantly checking the speedo and adjusting speed accordingly. My most recent ticket was a couple of years ago for a speed of 104KPh on the motorway. I’m sure the $30 fine didn’t help road safety one bit . My ticket previous to that was in 1972.

    3. I totally agree. I reiterate what I said before – it’s impossible to guarantee that you are not exceeding 100, unless you do significantly less. Why should we have to drive at 95 as recommended by kmccready? The legal limit is 100 and we should be able to drive to that limit without constantly checking and worrying.

      1. LOL. Lynne King, you say “The legal limit is 100 and we should be able to drive to that limit without constantly checking and worrying.” But then you want to be allowed to exceed the limit? Doesn’t make sense to me. Please check the research. It’s black and white – lower speed saves lives.

        1. All you do-gooders out there who have the right intentions who I wonder if you feel the same when you get pulled over and ticketed for your cars’ speed creeping to (lets say) 102km down a hill in a 100km speed area, or (lets say) 52km down a hill in a 50km/hr posted speed area.
          Even though it is not your intention to creep marginally over the posted speed, there is now no tolerance for this to happen to otherwise law-abiding public drivers – thereby making them law breakers.

          Don’t confuse this issue with the relatively small group of people who deliberately and consciously choose to drive at excessive speeds – and remember that that same group of people will do the exact same speeds whether the posted speeds are lowered or not.

          1. When the tolerance is there everyone is travelling at 60 kph and 110kph, so you face the same risk when you creep past 60 or 110 kph in the situations you describe. we all manage to keep to the 60 and 110 so we can just as easily manage at 50 and 100.

          2. Now I’m being pilloried for respecting the law and supporting the police? Sheeesh, what is NZ coming to?. Can’t believe the MSM support for the stupid Ron Mark campaign and those who want licence to break the law. By the current logic, any occurance of burglary, murder or any crime equals a failure of policing. Why don’t you just agree to slow down 5 Km per hour???? It’s really really really not very hard when you try and you’ll enjoy the drive so much more than playing the rather stupid and stressful game of keeping your speedo EXACTLTY on the speed limit. But hey, whatever turns you on. I can’t wait for the first successful prosecution of an idiot who causes an accident and says they didn’t have time to watch the road because they were playing “Watch the Speedo”.

          3. Well kmcready you do seem to have a very narrow-minded view of the world and reality.
            Clearly you just think because other people look at things fully through rather than only in a shielded view with rose-coloured glasses on you assume we are all anti-establishment and wilful law breakers.

            In my opinion you still fail to realize the impact of this if normal mums & dads or nanas & granddads inadvertently creeps up past the posted limit even from your 5km below.

            With cruise control set on my car, even at 95km/hr, down some hills the speed will creep up past the 100km/hr – that is what I am referring to not the wilful lawbreaking you re assuming we all are.

            This is even easier to do when in a 50km/hr posted area.

            In my opinion it is not fair for a law enforcement officer to sit near the bottom of a hill and ping everyone for fines and demerit points for that overrun happening.

            Clearly the zero tolerance has not helped the road toll this year has it?

          4. Thanks for insults Phill. Clearly we need new “normal”. And, it appears, some education about the limitations of some cruise control systems wouldn’t go astray.

          5. The comments were not intended as insults – but I would assume with your attitude you are retired, work for police enforcement, or are of religious persuasion who see things as very black & white.

            It is people with your attitude that will support all these things until your own car creeps inadvertently over the speed limit and you get fined and demerit points added.

            I should add that my last ticketed offence was over 7 years ago, and the next one before that was more than 12 years ago, and have never lost my licence, and I drive over 60,000km a year for work – so I am not saying this because I am high on debit points or that I speed intentionally, and when driving for work it is not as easy to just drive slower and enjoy the scenery.

          6. Constantly watching my speedometer now is causing me to look more at my dashboard than on the road and plus doing 50 through 50 gets a bunch of people up your backside tooting there horn. Police are just making it dangerous-impossible for the average Joe to drive without getting a fine. I was happy with the 10km/h tolerance, if you want us to drive slower then lower the speed limits appropriately. It also makes me laugh when there are areas with 100km/h speed limit and you can barely drive 60 without driving off a cliff-side to your doom, the speed limits need correctional action not the drivers.

    4. Well on16 December on Rangitera rd Beach Haven I got my $30.00 infringement notice for hitting 55 kph. I’m not anti police, just pissed off with myself for doing over 50 on a residential street.

  32. And what was the reason you were doing 5km/hr over the limit on that particular day?

    Was it on the flat or downhill?

    Were you following or leading a pack of cars?

    Did your speed creep up slowly without you knowing or realising over a short distance?

    Or were you deliberately and consciously driving at 5km/he above the posted limit?

    Was the 5km/hr very fast and would have definitively caused you to crash and kill more than the other cars doing 50km/hr or less?

    1. The creep up option. I realise now this was a failure of maintaining adequate attention whilst in charge of my vehicle. Note to self… whilst driving number one priority is too drive. 🙂

    2. Well said Matt L, I guess the people who like to play “Watch the Speedo” will keep playing while they moan. Absolutely right – you’ve pointed out that they play the game at 5-10 over the limit. They’ll just have to learn to play at the llimit. Can’t wait for compulsory driverless vehciles so that the god-given right to be an idiot on the roads finally comes to an end. And thanks for all the guesses about my occupation and work status Phill. Ad hominem is just what we need.

  33. Who would have thought we’d have some bald headed bloke on the tele complaining about the Police having a zero tolerance for motorists travelling over the speed limit. The police are dammed if they do and they’re crucified if they don’t. Remember folks. A police officer still has the power of discretion when it comes to stopping a vehicle. You don’t have to be speeding either. Every situation is different and most officers assess according to the circumstances at the time.

    You can be booked for doing 50 km/h in a 50 km//h zone. How many people know that? Well everyone, of course.. not. Once again, it is all dependent on the circumstances at the time… travelling at 50 km/h in a residential or built up area where there are cars parked on both sides of the street and children or people walking or playing. In this instance as with many others, a police officer could book a driver for speed dangerous. Ones speed, although travelling at the posted speed limit, may not be conducive to the surrounding environment at that time. Drive to the conditions, drive defensively. Simple really.

    With respect to motorcycle accident percentages rising in New Zealand. Unfortunately, the New Zealand public have been misled in this area. Yes there have been motorcycle rider fatalities, however, what the statisticians did was, lump the farm bike (trike/quad) accidents and fatalities in with the legitimate registered Motorcycle road users fatalities. Why? well, you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to work that one out. More money honey. Yes, because motorcycle registration fees had been down low (cost to the rider) for so long, I guess the system decided to justify the motorcycle registration increase by supplying false stats. Motorcyclists (legitimate) pay in the vicinity of $500/year to register their motorcycles.

    You would think that with all the revenue the system gets from RUC (Road user charges) registration in general, they’d have these roading contractors do a better job building the roads. If we did have first class roads, guess what? We could up the speed limit for cars and trucks to the same limits as Australia. Open road, trucks 100 km/h, cars 110 km/h, then there’s the exceptional Northern Territory 130 km/h posted open road speed.

    In conclusion, the police should never have put a +speed tolerance over the posted speed limit in the first place, as It only served to undermine the rules of the road and confuse the public. It could also serve as a defence argument in court. Think about it.

  34. Near Auckland harbour bridge LED display shows 70 kmh, 50 kmh but it is 80 kmh zone. Will this zero tolerance apply to 80 or the speed displayed in LED display?

  35. I’ve been out of the country for a while. Had a rental car and was stung $80 for doing 105 in a 100 zone. Straight road. I was being so careful because I remembered that insted if working FOR us as the police and local councils are supposed to, they work against us and make regular mum and dad drivers feel like criminals and become very negative towards the police and parking enforcers. But despite my best efforts somehow I must’ve creeped over. I can’t believe they’ve taken it this far, there HAS to be some slop + or – and 5% isn’t enough. Speed cameras are apparently within 2% and a speedo’s legal within 5. That’s 7 right there. I agree the limit isn’t a target as such, but my God do people here push you if you’re doing under it. Basically they’ve just lowered the limit everywhere. Now if I want to avoid a ticket I’ll need to shoot for 90 to allow 5k for a bit of up and down in the road and my foot, and 5k for the margin of error in the police cameras and my speedo. When the traffic round here cruises at 100 I’m going to piss people off for sure.

      1. It occurs to me that one of the basic functions (purpose) of personal transportation (cars etc.) is to get you from point A to point B as quickly as possible with reasonable consideration to safety and comfort. It seems to me that speed limits and their enforcement are often at odds with this basic purpose. I think this is why the Police get a lot of push back when their policy changes force people into behavioural adaptions to avoid the pain of speed enforcement which will ultimately slow their passage from point A to point B. The Police are muting in a tiny way one of the main reasons for owning and using a car. By the Police removing their tolerance I must now apply my own tolerance and control my speed about some speed that is some margin of my choosing below the speed limit. If people are smart they will adapt and avoid the penalties and the revenue stream will once again dry up. What worries me is where to next after this. They’ve basically done everything they can policy wise short of changing the law which is not a Police function anyway.

    1. Fines at less than 10 km/h over is $30, 10 to 15 km/h is $80, 15 to 20 km/h over is $120. You must have been at least 10 km/h over to cost you $80. You would have been in trouble irrespective of the change in Police policy. $30 doesn’t hurt too much but the demerit points are a little harder to take at those low margins.

  36. My dad followed me out to the Wairarapa yesterday, he was doing just over 70 I’d say. The queue of traffic was quickly in the hundreds and even before the passing lane people were pulling out and screaming past some tooting their horns. Down our side road I stay pretty close to 100 and every time utes and 4wds roar past like I’m going backwards. But if 90’s the new 100, I guess they’ll just have to live with me going even slower. Although how this is making the roads safer is beyond me. I swear it’s only been put in place to make it APPEAR as if they’re making an effort and doing the right thing. But as always, they’re targeting the wrong people. Like the anti drunk driving ads on TV. You really think recidivist drunks are at home watching telly on a Friday or Saturday night? No they’re out at the country pub where they know when they drive home the odds of getting pulled over are slim to nothing. I remember reading the statistics on drink driving and seeing that the worst offenders were so over the limit it was surprising they could even GET to the car. And these same people had usually been caught before and many had been disqualified. Yet, there they were, still driving. Back to 5k, it makes no sense to me why it should be so tightly policed. As I said, it’s effectively just a speed limit drop. So let’s just call a spade a spade, drop the speed limit and reinstate the 10% + or -.

      1. Kmccready, that’s exactly it in a nutshell. I WAS sticking to the limit. Or thought I was. Obviously I wasn’t as accurate as I thought. I wasn’t intentionally speeding. Surely it’s only common sense to allow about 10% to account for variations, inaccuracies and the fact it’s impossible to ‘stick (exactly) to the limit’. Still, I’ve made my donation to help cover the financial inefficiencies of the system, I’ll drop my speed to 90 and I’m pretty sure the road till will drop within minutes.

  37. Yep, 5k over. Totally on purpose. I was hooning in my little nana car, throwing caution to the wind, thumbing my nose at authority. But hey, that’s me, a real menace to society. I should probably be thrown in jail. They say Singapore is a police state. I can tell you it’s not a patch on this place.

  38. No you’re right. I should just get over it. Nobody should question anything. I just left a place a place like that. It’s very efficient – in a battery hen, zombie-like way.

  39. Great to see the police have their priorities in the right place. Like giving law abiding citizens tickets for 54km/hr in a 50km/hr area and attending the Pride festival. Meanwhile they don’t investigate when your house is broken into.

    1. “Like giving law abiding citizens tickets for 54km/hr in a 50km/hr area”

      They aren’t law abiding citizens if they are breaking the law eh?

  40. It’s amazing all these people on here saying that this is targeting “Mum and dad” drivers, as if somehow they should be exempt.

    Mums and dads, grandmas and grandads – their car will kill you as surely as a young boy racer’s if it is driven irresponsibly.

    Speed is a factor in 100% of accidents. If someone had been travelling slower, the accident would not have happened. For far too long we have tolerated hundreds of deaths in NZ as a fact of life and the cost of doing business.

    Enough is enough and I support the Police wholeheartedly in their policy.

  41. So the patched gang has mandatorily ( without legislative changes ) reduced their revenue limit yet again. They tell us it is to make things safer for us. But what is safer about having to spend OVER twice as long as before on the wrong side of the road to complete an overtaking manouver ??? Safer for their revenue coffers maybe !!!

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