“Until parents take a stronger stance on their young ones”
Irresponsible parents unaware of their children’s driving habits are under fire by a top police officer after a stolen car with six teenagers crashed into a tree, critically injuring the unlicensed driver.
The crash happened after a brief police chase in Auckland yesterday. It followed another incident in which police found a 14-year-old boy driving his drunk mother home during a drink-drive campaign in South Auckland at the weekend.
Road policing manager Inspector Heather Wells said that the mother had thought it was the safest thing to do.
Ms Wells said she was not surprised when told the driver of the vehicle that crashed yesterday was only 15 and unlicensed, or that his five passengers were aged between 13 and 15.
“Unfortunately this is what we are dealing with and until parents take a stronger stance on their young ones and take notice of what they are doing, we are going to continue to have this problem.”
The crash happened after police stopped a stolen vehicle in Manurewa, South Auckland.
The driver sped off and police gave chase but quickly lost sight of the car. They found it four minutes later after it crashed into a tree.
The driver had to be cut from the car and was admitted to Middlemore Hospital with critical leg injuries. His passengers were also taken to hospital with moderate and serious injuries.
Three of the passengers were discharged yesterday.
Ms Wells said the teenagers were suspected of stealing another car on Sunday.
They would face a variety of charges, including theft of a vehicle.
Police were investigating whether alcohol was a factor in the crash.
Inspector Wells said blood was being taken from the group to determine if alcohol was involved.
She said it was unclear how fast the car was going, but an officer pursuing it was left 600 metres being in a matter of seconds.
“They are very lucky they weren’t hurt more seriously,” Ms Wells said.
– Dominion Post, with NZPA