Revealed – top reason for roadside rescues in New Zealand

Insurer responded to more than 50,000 callouts last year

Revealed – top reason for roadside rescues in New Zealand

Motor & Fleet

By Kenneth Araullo

As the Christmas season and summer road trip period approach in New Zealand, AMI Roadside Rescue has released data on the predominant causes for roadside rescue calls, with battery issues being the primary concern.

Dean MacGregor (pictured above), executive general manager at AMI Roadside Rescue, reports that from January to September, the service responded to over 36,000 callouts due to vehicle breakdowns, nearly half of which were battery-related.

“In 2022 we responded to nearly 54,000 callouts in total. Other common callout reasons included, needing a tow, damage to tyres, mechanical concerns, keys locked in the car or keys not working, and electrical systems on the blink. But we’ve also had customers getting stuck in mud or grass, using the wrong fuel, and having the misfortune of two flat tyres at the same time or not having a spare at all,” MacGregor said.

With the arrival of summer, many New Zealanders are expected to embark on road trips. AMI emphasises the importance of vehicle maintenance to avoid breakdowns. MacGregor advises drivers to check their car batteries, especially older ones, ensure they have a spare tyre, and address any existing car issues before setting out.

“It’s no surprise there are more callouts in regions where there are more cars on the road, so Auckland takes the top spot for the numbers of callouts by a country mile, followed by Christchurch, Wellington, and Hamilton,” he said.

MacGregor also highlighted that with an average of 2,000 rescues per month, it is crucial for drivers to prepare for unexpected situations. He noted that 20% of callouts occur after hours, either between 6:30pm and 8:00am or during weekends.

AMI offers the following tips to avoid unplanned stops during summer trips:

  • Ensure your vehicle is well-maintained, including checking the battery, engine oil, coolant, windscreen fluid, brakes, lights, and tyre pressure
  • Refuel or recharge your car before departure and plan stops for both the car and passengers
  • Travel outside peak hours, consult real-time traffic updates via Waka Kotahi’s Journey Planner, and be prepared for delays
  • Take regular breaks to stay alert, especially on journeys longer than two hours, and avoid driving when tired
  • Secure all passengers, including pets, and choose the most suitable travel route
  • Check weather conditions before departure and adjust plans accordingly

In other company news, AMI recently officially introduced HomeHub, a comprehensive home repair service, to signal a new business avenue for the Kiwi insurer.

What are your thoughts on this story? Please feel free to share your comments below.

Related Stories

Keep up with the latest news and events

Join our mailing list, it’s free!