Collins wrong to claim credit for reduction in boy racer incidents

Police Minister Judith Collins has dishonestly claimed credit for a natural fall in boy racer incidents, says the car review website dogandlemon.com.

Editor Clive Matthew-Wilson, who is an outspoken road safety campaigner, says the statistics show that boy racer deaths and injuries were already falling sharply a year before Collins' car-crushing legislation was passed.

"The boy racer phenomenon was a trend that was already on the way out by the time Collins passed her car-crushing legislation. The drop in accidents and injuries before the legislation was passed was actually greater than the fall after the legislation was passed.”

“In the year before the legislation was passed, the numbers of accidents and injuries dropped sharply, from nine deaths, 91  injuries and 116 crashes, to five deaths, 68 injuries and  82 crashes.  Collins’ legislation had not been passed then, so how can she explain this? The most likely answer is that the drop in deaths and injuries quoted by the minister was simply a continuation of the downward trend that began in 2008, a year before the legislation was passed.”

 

Year          Deaths    Numbers  Injured     Numbers of Crashes

2007          9                         91                                116

2008          5                         68                                82

2009          6                         49                                69

2010          1                         49                                71

“There is little evidence that Collins' legislation had any effect whatsoever.”

Matthew-Wilson says a more probable explanation for the drop in boy racer incidents is that the boy racers simply grew up.

“Boy racer gatherings were a youth phenomenon of the early 21st century, similar to the Teddy Boy gatherings of the 1950s, Hippie gatherings in the 1960s and Punk gatherings in the 1980s. As each of these generations aged, they began behaving more responsibly. The boy racers who were taunting police in 2003 probably have children of their own now, and they’re behaving a bit more like adults.”

“Boy racers are still out there, but they’re no longer in the same large, organised groups, which probably explains the drop in boy racer incidents.”

 

Boy racer incidents, 2001-14

Year          Deaths    Numbers  Injured     Numbers of Crashes

2001          7                         77                                70

2002          3                         88                                85

2003          9                         79                                72

2004          8                         71                                77

2005          6                         97                                97

2006          9                         87                                92

2007          9                         91                                116

2008          5                         68                                82

2009          6                         49                                69

2010          1                         49                                71

2011          4                         29                                42

2012          4                         27                                36

2013          2                         14                                32

2014          0                         23                                33

 (Source: Office of Judith Collins)

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