For Immediate Release
18 March 2015
Rental vehicle companies working together to improve road safety
New Zealand’s leading rental vehicle companies have agreed to develop a Code of Best Practice aimed at improving the safety of both visiting drivers and New Zealand road users.
The leaders of about 25 rental vehicle companies, representing the majority of cars and campervans hired to international visitors, gathered at a meeting in Auckland on Monday to discuss concerns over the safety of visiting drivers. The meeting was convened by the Tourism Industry Association New Zealand (TIA) and the Rental Vehicle Association New Zealand (RVA).
The Code of Best Practice will be developed as a matter of urgency.
It will include actions such as:
- increased screening of driver experience at the time of hiring and at vehicle pick-up
- more pre-arrival information about New Zealand driving conditions
- more information-sharing between rental vehicle operators about visitors whose contracts have been cancelled.
TIA Chief Executive Chris Roberts says the Code of Best Practice will build on the extensive work already done to educate visiting drivers on what’s different about driving in New Zealand. These include developing best practice guidelines for rental vehicle operators and accommodation providers and the DriveSafe website which provides a range of important messages and useful information for visiting drivers, with key messages translated into Mandarin, German and French.
It also follows the Government’s announcement last week that road safety improvements would be fast-tracked in Otago, Southland and the West Coast.
RVA Chief Executive Barry Kidd says those at yesterday’s meeting recognised the need for their sector to take more action. “We will also be working with other tourism organisations to ensure they are aware of the Code of Best Practice and giving preference to those operators who have agreed to use it,” Mr Kidd says.
AA Motoring Affairs General Manager Mike Noon, who attended the meeting, says the agreement to develop the Code of Best Practice is a welcome step by the rental vehicle sector. “It was great to see the commitment to positive action from the CEOs and sector leaders at yesterday’s meeting. Getting the industry working together and supporting the actions being taken by the government will achieve better road safety outcomes,” Mr Noon says.
For more information, please contact:
07 868 0017