AA callouts to beaches soar

22:42, Jan 06 2014

While beachgoers have been cooling off and recharging their batteries, their cars have been doing the opposite - AA callouts to the coast have been soaring.

AA Roadservice national manager John Healy said callouts to coastal spots have soared during the summer holiday period.

More than half of beach callouts over the last fortnight have been for flat batteries, difficulties starting the car, or keys locked inside, he said.

"Our service officers and contractors have accessed a number of locked vehicles to retrieve car keys that have inadvertently been left in the boot, after people have dropped the keys inside while they're unloading bags, or getting beach gear and picnic baskets out.

''Because they're relaxed and in holiday mode, people quite often make mistakes they wouldn't normally make."

To make the situation worse, queues to get to beaches have made access to stranded drivers difficult, particulary in Auckland.

The most popular beach spots to breakdown in Wellington were Paraparaumu Beach and Waikanae Beach.

Mr Healy said that if there is an animal or child locked in a vehicle, they do not need to be an AA Member to phone for help.

Top 20 coastal locations for AA callouts (December 21 to January 6)
1. Mission Bay (56)
2. Paraparaumu Beach (43)
3. Bucklands Beach (42)
4. Whakatane (42)
5. Thames (38)
6. Red Beach (38)
7. Whitianga (35)
8. Tairua (34)
9. Raglan (34)
10. Papamoa Beach (30)
11. Mangawhai Heads (24)
12. Snells Beach (22)
13. Pauanui (22)
14. Hahei (21)
15. Paihia (21)
16. Piha (20)
17. Waikanae Beach (20)
18. Coromandel (19)
19. Lake Tekapo (18)
20. Russell (17)


The Dominion Post