Home' The Mirror Queenstown Lakes : September 26th 2012 Contents 8
lakes district news
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Drivers accused of being unsafe
recycling truck at
View the video
View video of the incident at southlandtimes.co.nz
By BROOKE GARDINER
A Queenstown man who was left
facing court charges, with an un-
useable vehicle and thousands of
dollars out of pocket, after a run in
with a recycling truck wants
professional drivers to brush up
Businessman Preston Rogers-
Brown believes poor driving
habits have long been an issue in
the resort but a recent incident
has prompted him to speak out.
He was charged with performing
an unsafe passing manoeuvre
when a recycling truck pulled out
in front of him without indicating
near Queenstown Primary School
in December. The charges were
thrown out in the Queenstown
Still reeling from the case, Mr
Rogers-Brown said it was time
someone highlighted the poor
driving practices of many drivers
operating vehicles on local roads.
''He didn't indicate. He didn't look
in his mirror. He didn't give way.
He didn't follow the road code and
he didn't get charged. I did.
''I bet I'm not the only person who
has had a problem with a
professional driver,'' he said.
Video footage shown to the Mirror
shows a Smart Environmental
truck, with its flashing orange
light on, pull in to an empty
carpark near some wheelie bins
without indicating before pulling
out, again without indicating, in
front of Mr Rogers-Brown.
''If you time it, I had less than a
second to react. I swerved
and braked. The first words
he said to me were ''sorry
mate, didn't see you there''.''
However, the police sum-
mary of facts states the
Smart Environmental driver
told police he was pulling
over to allow a vehicle
travelling in the opposite
direction to pass safely
rather than pulling over to
collect rubbish and Mr Rogers-
Brown was charged.
''There was no reason for me to
think he wasn't getting rubbish or
recycling,'' he said.
The incident highlighted long
held concerns about a lack of
indication and what he believed
was excessive use of flashing
orange lights on service vehicles,
especially those not in service,
which could make the community
complacent, Mr Rogers Brown
''They see it so often they won't
pay attention to it when it's on for
the intended purpose,'' he said.
Smart Environmental manager
Ricci Peyroux said he was aware
of the incident but was surprised
to learn it had been taken to court.
The driver had been hired on a
short term contract which fin-
ished about the time of the
''We haven't been involved with
any part of the court case,'' Mr
It was the first case of its kind in
the five years he had worked for
the company and Mr Peyroux said
he had not received any com-
plaints about the driving of his
staff but welcomed anyone with
concerns to contact him.
Drivers were supposed to only use
their flashing amber lights when
carrying out collections, he said.
''Typically, lights are off when
drivers are driving a long
distance to their next collection.''
Queenstown Lakes District Coun-
cil solid waste manager Stefan
Borowy said he was unaware of
any complaints regarding the
driving of council contracted
rubbish trucks and said he would
expect police to contact him if
they dealt with any.
It didn't matter if flashing amber
beacons were left on all the time
but it was important they were
used during collections, Mr
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