News from NZ Police
A 21-year-old Hawke’s Bay woman is fighting for her life in hospital after the second serious boy racer crash in the region in two weeks.
The young woman was critically injured in a crash on the Te Mata-Mangateretere Rd on the outskirts of Havelock North about 1.50am on Saturday. She was one of four passengers in the car driven by her 22-year-old brother. The car lost control on a slight bend and smashed into a power pole.
Police have confirmed the car was travelling as part of a boy racer “chain” and was trying to pass another car when it crashed. Speed was a major factor. It also appears that only the driver of the car was wearing a seatbelt.
The injured woman is seriously ill in a coma in Hawke’s Bay Hospital’s intensive care unit. One of the passengers suffered moderate injuries, while the other two passengers and the driver escaped with only minor injuries.
Police are currently interviewing a number of young people who were in the drag chain on Friday night/Saturday morning.
The crash follows the death of Maree Shafer, 18, who died on February 19 when the car she was in crashed on Sandy Rd, Meeanee, during a high-speed race between boy racers.
Police are highly critical of the boy racers, who meet up in Napier every Friday night and form “trains” or “chains” of up to 50 cars. They often race each other, usually on rural roads or in industrial areas.
Sergeant Clint Adamson said the boy racers were putting lives at risk – not just their own, but innocent members of the public who may get caught up in their antics.
“It’s time for these so-called car enthusiasts to take a long hard look at themselves and their driving behaviour. They are making extremely poor driving decisions that have a huge impact on everyone in their vehicle and on the roads.
“They need to take responsibility for their actions and realise that their version of having a good time is killing people,” Mr Adamson said.
Police were also concerned at the apparent lax attitude amongst boy racers to wearing seatbelts. In almost all boy racer crashes, seatbelts are never worn.
Mr Adamson said it was a no-brainer. “If you’re not wearing a seatbelt, you put your life at risk, especially in these types of situations. It’s a real concern that these young people are willing to risk their lives for a bit of fun and excitement.”
Police kept a keen eye on boy racer activity in the region, especially on a Friday night. Several Facebook pages such as Friday Drags HB are closely monitored.
Mr Adamson said the onus was on boy racers to stand up and take responsibility for their actions.
“This is the second serious crash involving boy racers in two weeks. One person is dead and another is fighting for her life. How many more people have to die for them to get the message?”