Happy New Year everyone.  I hope everyone had a good Christmas and New Year celebration.

It is a busy time, with everyone travelling to family events and holiday spots, so the record low holiday toll is a credit to both drivers and the New Zealand Police.

Six deaths is still six too many, but it is a major improvement on previous years.  The hard work and enforcement presence of the police is getting through, and drivers are taking on board all the road safety messages.

Another bit of good news was that 2,000 people obviously decided the New Year was a good time to give up smoking and have signed up with Quitline.  Last year, 63,000 quit attempts were made by New Zealanders through Quitline services – nearly 19,000 more than in 2008.

A New Year is always a good time for a fresh start.