Media Releases

These are the most recent media releases from the Dog and Lemon Guide.
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Safety expert explains how to lower the road toll

One of the country’s leading road safety experts has outlined what he calls the ‘seven essential steps’ for lowering the road toll.

Clive Matthew-Wilson, editor of the car buyers’ Dog & Lemon Guide, says that it’s not good enough to simply blame bad driving for the road toll.

“The country’s transport system needs to be set up so that it’s easy to do the right thing and hard to do the wrong thing.”

Matthew-Wilson gave the example of the Auckland harbour bridge, which used to suffer one serious road accident every week.

Government ignored advice that cellphone ban wouldn’t work

The government ignored major overseas studies showing that motorists tend to ignore cellphone bans when it passed its anti-cellphone legislation.

Recent studies in New Zealand have confirmed that the cellphone ban is being widely ignored. A recent American study also suggests laws that ban texting while driving are ineffective at best and could be counter-productive because they encourage surreptitious behaviour behind the wheel.

AA Backs Call For Reversing Cameras

The AA has joined The Dog & Lemon Guide, St John, Plunket Society and Consumer New Zealand in calling for the wider use of reversing cameras as a means of reducing driveway deaths.

St John Backs Call For Reversing Cameras

St John has joined the growing body of safety groups calling for the wider use of reversing cameras as a means of reducing driveway deaths.

Jaimes Wood, chief executive of St John, says:

“All-too-often we are called to tragedies involving children hit by reversing cars. We support any moves that will result in a reduction of needless deaths and injuries."

Reversing Cameras Help Prevent Driveway Deaths

The Dog & Lemon Guide, Plunket Society and Consumer New Zealand are calling for the wider use of reversing cameras as a means of reducing driveway deaths. Reversing cameras, which show the driver what's behind the vehicle using a small video screen on the car's dashboard, are an expensive option on many new vehicles but are widely available as accessories for between $130 and $700.

Proposed Alcohol Legislation Won’t Work

Adults who knowingly supply alcohol to underage drinkers should be heavily penalised if those underage drinkers cause serious harm while drunk, according to a leading road safety campaigner.

Clive Matthew-Wilson, editor of the car buyers’ Dog & Lemon Guide, was commenting after the government announced that it is considering making it unlawful for adults to give alcohol to young people at private functions without their parents' consent.

Matthew-Wilson says:

Holden Still Faces Grim Future

Holden’s future as a carmaker is still grim, despite today’s announcement that the bankrupt General Motors won’t be closing its Australian Holden plants, says the car buyers’ Dog & Lemon Guide.

Editor Clive Matthew-Wilson says:

“Holden has said its Australian assembly operations will continue, without really explaining how.”

Carr Deluding Voters over Holden

Industry Minister Kim Carr is deluding both himself and his voters over the future of Holden, says the car buyers’ Dog & Lemon Guide.

Editor Clive Matthew-Wilson says: “Senator Carr has expressed confidence that Holden’s Australian assembly operations will continue, without really explaining how.”

“To build cars profitably in the 21st century, you need to have a very large local market and/or a very large export market and/or very low costs. Holden has none of these.”

Plan to allow heavier trucks “insanity” - expert

It’s dangerous and wasteful to allow heavier trucks on New Zealand roads, says the car buyers’ Dog & Lemon Guide.

Commenting after the government announced that it would allow trucks of up to 53 tonnes on public roads, Dog & Lemon Guide editor Clive Matthew-Wilson said:

“This is insane. Not only is this incredibly wasteful of energy, it’s also a serious risk to other motorists. One in five trucks were found to have brake faults in 2007, and the larger the truck, the harder it is to stop.”