Ban on unsafe used imports desperately needed

2 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineJune 17, 2019

The Motor Industry Association says it would welcome discussion on sensible policies to ban unsafe used vehicles from being imported into New Zealand as part of the government‘s new road safety strategy.

MIA chief executive David Crawford says that for too many years now, New Zealand has been importing older unsafe vehicles that are not designed for local conditions.

“We have a huge number of used vehicles coming through our ports that do not meet modern safety standards of New Zealand-new vehicles.”

And he says we can expect to see a big influx of lower quality used cars coming into the country in the next few months, ahead of a ban on the importation vehicles without electronic stability control coming into force next year.

“ESC can reduce the risk of crashing due to loss of control by 30 percent and has been hailed as the biggest step towards reducing serious injuries and fatalities since the compulsory wearing of seatbelts.

“Despite this technology being in place for more than a decade now, New Zealand is still importing old unsafe vehicles without this important safety feature.”

Crawford says New Zealand has effectively been a disposal bin for other countries‘ old bangers for many years now. Many of these vehicles have been at the end of their use-by dates in their country of origin.

“This effectively means our fleet is older, more unsafe and less fuel efficient than most other developed countries.

“It means that we‘re paying the cost in terms of increased injuries and higher transport emissions.”