Lewis Pass truck crash takes road toll to 5 πŸ’₯πŸš‘πŸš“πŸš‘πŸš“πŸš‘πŸš“πŸ’₯

Police are urging motorists to drive with a focus on safety as the Christmas-New Year holiday road toll climbed to five.

β€œWhile it is too early to determine exactly why these crashes happened, previous experience suggests speed, poor decision- making, distractions and no restraints are likely to feature,” Assistant Commissioner Bruce O’Brien said today.

β€œThis has been an incredibly tragic start to the holiday period on our roads and a number of families will never be the same.”

In the latest fatality, a truck driver rolled on the Lewis Pass in Canterbury early today, causing a major highway to be closed for many hours.

Police said the crash involving a truck and trailer in the Lewis Pass Rd (State Highway 7) was reported to police just after 3.30am and the driver died at the scene. No other people or vehicles were involved.

An investigation by the serious crash unit is under way to determine the circumstances.

The NZ Transport Agency advised that part of SH7 between Hanmer Springs Turnoff and Springs Junction remained closed late this afternoon and a crane was on site helping to recover the truck.

Road users should avoid the area and delay their journeys if possible. Diversions remain in place.

Meanwhile, four other people have died around the country as a result of crashes since Friday.

A person was killed after being struck by a vehicle in Auckland on Saturday night. Police say they were hit on Rosamund Ave, in the suburb of New Windsor, just before 10.30pm and died at the scene.

In South Otago, a driver was killed following a collision between a truck and a car north of Waihola about 9.15am on Saturday.

A motorcyclist died in a crash at the intersection of Broadley Downs and Gordonton Rd, Gordonton, in Waikato, just after 9.20am on Saturday.

And person was killed in a two-car crash which injured five other people south of Taupo on Friday night.

Police said they expect the roads to continue to be busy, with people leaving their Christmas day bases and heading off to holiday destinations.

β€œPlease keep calm and be patient on the road, and accept there will be some delays on your journey,” Assistant Commissioner O’Brien said.

β€œPlan ahead, watch your speed and following distances, pay attention to the conditions, stop and take a break if you’re feeling tired, and allow plenty of time to get where you are going- especially if you are travelling on roads you don’t know.”

Police would continue to have a visible presence on roads this summer, taking enforcement action where necessary.

β€œBut we cannot be everywhere – and ultimately drivers have the responsibility to keep their passengers, other road users, and themselves safe this holiday period,” he said.

The official Christmas/New Year’s holiday period ends at 6am on January 5.

– ODT Online

Lewis Pass truck crash takes road toll to 5

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