Driver caught twice after clocking 159kmh


Police are disappointed at a driver who was stopped doing 159kmh near Springs Junction and then stopped again about an hour later for driving while his licence was suspended.
Nelson senior sergeant Grant Andrews says the driver was caught as a result of a “huge” police presence on the State Highways around Springs Junction, Murchison and St Arnaud. Police have been targeting SH7 and SH65 after the number of vehicles on those roads increased from about 1500 to 4200 a day following the closure of SH1 after the Kaikoura earthquake in November.
“Road policing staff from Tasman have made a huge commitment to that area,” Grant says. “We’ve got two staff permanently positioned at Murchison and we’ll be extending that out to the end of June, at this point.
“One guy recently went past the camera van at 159 and they called up the highway patrol who stopped him at Springs Junction. He had his licence suspended on demerit points we took him back to Maruia Motels so he could stay the night.
“We even dropped his car off there because he didn’t want to leave on the side of the road. But we went back there an hour later and the car had gone, so we radioed down the road and got him again and he was charged with driving while suspended. People like this are really disappointing – 159kmh is just not acceptable.”
However, Grant says the majority of drivers have been very patient and police are delighted there were no “significant injury crashes” on those roads over the busy Christmas period. He says the increased physical presence of police, as well as enforcement and education, are all helping to ensure traffic flows smoothly and safely though the roads. “We’ve given away pallet loads of water to drivers with drive safe messages on the bottles. We are also giving coffee vouchers to drivers who we pull over, and we are talking to them about their driving. We’ve also stopped a few drivers for impeding traffic. In fact, I was down at the lake yesterday and I got one myself.
“A lot of them are unfamiliar with the roads, so it’s about education. If you see vehicles backing up behind you, there’s a reason, and it’s about bringing it to their attention.”