Spate of crashes on icy roads

BLANTON SMITH
Last updated 05:00 23/07/2014

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Police are warning motorists to "drive to the conditions" after a morning of crashes on Taranaki's roads yesterday.

"Drivers need to be careful. When you wake up and see that it's cold and there is a frost it means there will be ice on the roads," New Plymouth Sergeant Bruce Irvine said.

"Drive to the conditions. It's an age old saying and it won't be there first time people have heard this," he said.

Emergency services attended eight crashes between 4.30 am and 10 am yesterday with two people being taken to hospital.

The problems started about 4.40am when the first crash was reported on Mountain Rd, near Stratford.

About 15 minutes later another, involving a courier van and a car, was reported just up the road from the first.

Then at 5.45am a third crash was reported on Mountain Rd, this time just north of Midhirst.

That was followed by another in the Stratford area, this time on Opunake Rd, Mahoe, Irvine said.

A 57-year-old man was taken to hospital following the crash which happened about 6am, a St John spokesman said.

At 6.45am two cars collided on Junction Rd, near Burgess Park, Irvine said.

Five minutes later another vehicle crash was reported on Monmouth Rd, near Stratford, and at 8.10am there was a crash on Manutahi Rd, Lepperton.

"In that one a van crashed," Irvine said.

The final crash, and the only one not linked to icy roads, was in Hawera where two cars crashed at the intersection of Glover and Waihi roads at 10.15am.

A female driver was taken to Hawera Hospital by ambulance for a checkup.

Automobile Association motoring manager Andrew Bayliss said there were several things that could be done to avoid crashing on icy roads.

"Keeping speed down and avoiding sudden movements, whether it be the steering, acceleration or braking, that's the gist of it," he said.

"Just try and keep yourself safe and don't go out unless you have to."

Bayliss said under- and over-inflated tyres could also be hazardous in icy conditions and for those heading up the mountain and driving on snow, chains were advised.

 

AA DRIVING TIPS

Drive to the conditions.

Avoid sudden steering, braking and acceleration movements.

Keep your speed down.

Don't drive unless you have to.

Use chains in the snow.

Inflate tyres to manufacturers' specifications.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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