Police launch Operation Hannah
Police will be at ski fields this week making sure vehicles and drivers are safe to be on the roads.
“We want everyone to be able to experience and enjoy New Zealand’s great outdoors,” says Inspector Mike Brooklands, police commercial vehicle safety team national manager.
“More importantly, we want everyone travelling on our roads to do so safely.”
Operation Hannah is a multi-site operation targeting vehicles in and around ski fields including passenger services vehicles.
It focuses on improving both vehicle safety and work-related road safety through road safety prevention, compliance and education.
Eleven-year-old Hannah Francis was tragically killed when a bus carrying 31 passengers crashed near Tūroa ski field in 2018.
Her death was in every way avoidable.
NZ Police has permission from the Francis and Bruton families to undertake this operation in Hannah’s name.
“Operating a vehicle or PSV in a ski field environment is unique,” says Mike.
“The roads to and from the ski fields are mountainous, are more likely to have fewer road safety infrastructures than our state highways, and more likely to have ice and snow on the road surface. These combined conditions place greater strain on a vehicle and driver ability.”
Police will be targeting PSVs to make sure they are in a safe condition, compliant, and being operated in a safe manner.
Police will also be checking drivers for signs of fatigue and impairment and making sure everyone is wearing a seatbelt.
From Tuesday, July 27, through to Sunday, August 1, NZ Police in partnership with Waka Kotahi (NZ Transport Agency) will be at five major ski fields:
- Mt Ruapehu – Whakapapa
- Mt Ruapehu – Tūroa
- Mt Hutt
- Coronet Peak
- The Remarkables
“We will be highly visible on the roads leading to and from the ski fields. We want to make sure everyone travelling to enjoy the snow can do so safely from when they leave home until they return.
“Police is committed to reducing the number of deaths and serious injuries on our roads and operations like this one will increase vehicle safety and save lives.”