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Council receives Coroner’s report

30 August 2006

Christchurch City Council has received the Coroner’s report, issued yesterday Tuesday 29 August, regarding the deaths of two army soldiers on 11 August 2004 on Bossu Road, Banks Peninsula during a Unimog driver training exercise.

The Council has not had an opportunity to fully consider the report. The Council will no doubt give favourable consideration to the Coroner’s recommendations, says Christchurch City Council Chief Executive, Lesley McTurk.

 “The deaths of two young men is a tragic event. It is a terrible thing for any family to have to go through,” says Dr McTurk.

Although the report found subsidence of the shoulder of the road was one of the causes of the accident, the road complied with Transit New Zealand’s maintenance standards.

Dr McTurk, says “The Banks Peninsula District Council’s maintenance contract policy was to comply with the standards set by Transit NZ and when Banks Peninsula’s roads were audited by Transit NZ in March 2004 they complied with those standards.”

Bossu Road is a high altitude, predominately single lane country road with low usage. After the accident, additional signs were erected on similar roads on Banks Peninsula, warning drivers to proceed with caution. (There are more than 300 kilometres of road similar to Bossu Road on Banks Peninsula).

Banks Peninsula District Council became part of the Christchurch City Council earlier this year – about 18 months after the accident. Christchurch City Council has taken over responsibility for Banks Peninsula’s roading.

“The Council will look at what other measures can be practicably undertaken to draw drivers’ attention to the need to take due care on these roads and reduce the possibility of future accidents. It will also look at carrying out more frequent road inspections as recommended by the Coroner,” says Dr McTurk.

“We are committed to continue to work with Transit NZ to ensure our roads comply with their national standards.”

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