Petition to test foreign drivers to go before Parliament on Tuesday




The father of five-year-old Ruby Marris, killed by an overseas driver in 2015, is the latest to lend his voice to a petition heading to Parliament on Tuesday.

Ruby Marris

Source: 1 NEWS

The Foreign Driver Testing Petition being presented to Winston Peters, calls for all foreigners, issued with a visa longer than three months who wish to drive here, to sit a New Zealand licence test.

Interim 2016 data from the Ministry of Transport shows at least 22 people were killed in crashes last year where a foreign driver was at fault.

"They talk about percentages, how it's only six per cent of the overall road toll, how can they talk like that? These are peoples' lives," said Tristan Marris.

Ruby died when her Oamaru-based family were hit near Moeraki by Chinese national Jing Cao in February 2015.

Her parents and two sisters were injured, as well as Cao’s passenger.

Both Ruby's parents have signed the petition, along with the families of Northland's Kylie Rakich and Virginia Keogh, who were killed last year.

Relatives and friends of motorcyclists Dennis Pedersen and Grant Roberts who died in 2012 near Twizel have also signed the petition.

Tristan Marris agrees more needs to be done to better educate and up-skill visitors.

"If I got a shotgun and went out and killed that many people a year what would happen? The Government is not respecting human life, they’d rather have the almighty tourist dollar."

NZTA figures show 25 per cent of fatal and injury crashes in the Queenstown Lakes area involve foreign drivers.

The petition now has around 6600 signatures.

Tauranga woman Judy Richards is behind the call for legislative changes.

Her family this week commemorated the first anniversary of her son Rhys' death, laying flowers at the scene where he was killed on the Napier-Taupo Highway.

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