Speedsters, dangerous drivers targeted

HANNAH MCLEOD
Last updated 05:00 08/02/2014
Te Anau police operation
BARRY HARCOURT/Fairfax NZ
ACTION PLAN: Southern Highway Patrol police, from left, Constable Dwight Grieve, Constable Mark Gerken, Constable Mark Gerken and Acting Sergeant Blair Dalton plan their Waitangi Weekend operation at the Te Anau police station.

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Buses overtaking on double yellow lines and drivers speeding at more than 120kmh are among the bad behaviour already seen by police in an operation targeting driver behaviour between Queenstown and Milford Sound.

Acting Sergeant Blair Dalton said police were targeting bad driver behaviour, including speeding, dangerous passing manoeuvres and people not wearing seatbelts.

"We do this each year on the back of the peak tourist season, targeting Waitangi Weekend in particular, when people take advantage of the long weekend," he said.

The taskforce of five patrol units had stopped hundreds of vehicles since the operation began on Thursday, Dalton said..

"We are seeing a lot of high speeds, going 120kmh or more."

Speedsters were tourists and New Zealanders.

"[Yesterday] morning, four buses were stopped on the Milford road for passing on double yellow lines," he said.

People pulling out and passing on double yellow lines and on blind corners was a significant problem.

A drink-driver was stopped in Te Anau and had a breath alcohol level more than twice the legal limit, Dalton said.

He encouraged people who witnessed concerning driver behaviour to call *555 or 111.

"We will absolutely do our best to get there, or at least to follow up any calls received," he said.

The operation ends on Monday.

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- The Southland Times

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