Driver behaviour disappoints

Photo by ODT.
Photo by ODT.
Constable Jason Reid, of Queenstown, speaks to a driver on Malaghans Rd yesterday afternoon during an educational campaign reminding drivers to slow to 20kmh when passing a school bus.

The joint educational campaign between the Queenstown Lakes District Council and police targeting drivers speeding past stationary school buses had disappointing results. Const Reid said yesterday's ''dummy run'' would have resulted in thousands of dollars in infringement notices issued - and eight or nine drivers would have lost their licences, based on the speeds they were travelling.

For an hour from 8am, a school bus was parked at Fernhill, with police stopping any motorist who exceeded the 20kmh rule for passing a stationary school bus.

Yesterday afternoon, the operation moved to Malaghans Rd, near the Flight Park.

Const Reid police had encountered many tourists who were unaware of the rule, ''but certainly a lot of New Zealanders who are still passing ... faster than 20kmh''.

Along with a $150 infringement notice for passing a school bus with undue care, drivers were also liable for standard speeding fines, ranging from $120 to $230 and a loss of their licence.

''If I was going by what I've seen here today, I could guarantee you ... I would have taken the licences off around eight or nine people so far for the speed they're going.

''I'd certainly hope when school does start going back, people are taking care passing a school bus.''

As soon as schools started for the year, police would be ''out in force'' ticketing drivers who did not slow down, ''just to drive the message home''.