Monday, 7 February 2011

Kiwi Speed Fines

"Hello there sir, how are you?" asked the traffic policeman as hubby rolled down his side window.

Didn't I say the Kiwis are friendly?

He then requested to see hubby's driving license and asked about his occupation and date of birth.

Not wanting to raise the cop's curiosity too much as he did the immigrations officer, hubby said he was a retiree.

"I'm afraid you have gone over the speed limit for this road sir, which is 100 kph. My radar recorded your speed at 122 kph. Where are you headed for?"

"Te Anau"

"Te Anau... are you on holiday?"

"Yes sir"

"Unfortunately, I have to write you a ticket and since you have exceeded the limit by 22 kph. the fine will be 170 dollars. I'll explain how you can make the payment after I've finished."

We cringed... 170 dollars! That's about 420 ringgit. Now that is most unfortunate for US - not the policeman nor the NZ economy.

Well... no cruise on the fiord then.

"If you like, you can come with me to my car and check the radar reading", he offered.

I'm not sure if our Malaysian traffic police do this. I know that if our car is captured on speed-camera, the onus is on us to disprove the read-out if we think it's wrong.

When the officer handed us the ticket, he explained that we could pay for it at any branch of the NZ Westpac bank or on-line at the NZ Police website.

Before he walked away, he wished us a very good holiday and to drive safely.

From then on hubby stuck to the speed limit which was always prominently displayed on the roadside especially before a curve, or upon entering a built-up area or a school zone - otherwise I was the one to remind him.

Even that, we were caught a second time because he missed the sign while I was busy fiddling with the GPS.

This time he was doing 79kph in a 50kph zone (being the road was untarred due to maintenance) and because of the bigger difference, the fine was a whopping 230 dollars!

That was another huge contribution to the NZ economy. After that, no more... hubby drove like a little old lady, and if not for the splendid scenery everywhere we went he would have fallen asleep at the wheel many, many times.

So anyone who is taking a road trip in New Zealand, do drive within the speed limits not only for the sake of your budget but above all for your own safety and that of other road users as well.


Cat-in-Sydney said...

Aunty Zen,
What? NZ$400 speeding fines? Aiyo! Purrrlease tell Uncle RA to stick to public transportation. Tambah sikit lagi enough to sponsor me on a 5D/4N flight + accommodation in Christchurch. But thanks for supporting the NZ economy....hehehehe.... purrrr....meow!

Pak Zawi said...

Now we can see the difference between NZ and Malaysia. In Malaysia they will make you an offer that is hard to resist. No wonder why it is safe to drive in NZ, everything done at a leisurely pace and with precision. Anyway aren't you supposed to drive leisurely so that you can soak up the scenery?

Red Alfa said...

The fines do remind me of the song "killing me softly with his song"!

Yes, the first fine was quite hefty but the tickets were given with such politeness they had to be irresistibly repeated with getting another and the heavier one at that!

Together, they could have paid for lots more enjoyable activities we could have had including could have got CiS to join us!

But as it happened.....

mamasita said...

Well..luckily you guys had the spare cash..otherwise..err..

My late mum kata biar duit terbang asalkan nyawa selamat so..takperlah..Alhamdullillah jugak..:D

Wan Sharif said...

Hopefully the speeding fines do not dampened the holiday mood..

Zendra-Maria said...

Pak Zawi,

When his adrenalin was still pumping after the bungy, RA couldn't stand driving behind two leisurely-paced motorists so he overtook both of them at one go... he didn't slow down in time... hehehe

Yup.. there's no such thing as "settling" over there, it's not in their vocabulary

Zendra-Maria said...

mamasita, we didn't pay there. Balik bayar online jer :)

Zendra-Maria said...

Wan, kita redhakan... ada hikmah mungkin..