Hawke's Bay police will be joining their colleagues across the rest of the country and Australia for the sixth Operation Unite - a three-day campaign which gets under way tomorrow targeting alcohol-related violence and offending.
"This weekend, police will call on the community to think about the consequences of behaviour when out drinking long after the night is over. Society has reached a tipping point in regards to the detrimental impacts of alcohol on our health, wellbeing and safety," Jon White, the CEO of ANZPAA, the agency that serves Police Commissioners across Australia and New Zealand, said.
"The message that Operation Unite sends is to be safe. It is about the community thinking responsibly and sensibly when going out drinking in public and being aware of the environment around them. Go out and have a good time, but don't let the fun get out of hand."
Bay police are hoping the results echo last year's blitz where only a small number of drink-related offences took place.
As well as targeting bars and streets, drink-drive checkpoints would be out in force.
Last year 4900 vehicles were stopped and seven drivers processed for excess breath-alcohol.
About 30 police will be involved across the region.
It comes as police warned motorists of an impending crackdown this summer.
Seven people, including five motorcyclists, died last weekend on North Island roads, while more than a dozen people were injured.
The carnage brought the road toll for the year to date to 275 - up from 256 at the same time last year - and just nine shy of 2011's 50-year low.
Eastern police district communications manager Kris McGehan said heavy holiday traffic on Hawke's Bay roads presented an increased danger for motorists.
Nineteen people have already died this year on the region's roads.
"In Hawke's Bay we've got a busy roading network that people use to get to and from events around the East Coast area," he said.
"There will be a lot of people moving around the area and we ask people to be patient and drive to the conditions."
A lack of seatbelts, drugs and alcohol were the biggest issues police came across in the region, Ms McGehan said.
But police would be out in force to catch those driving under the influence.
"We'll be having lots of checkpoints in the coming summer months and they will be both in the city and rural areas."
Speed, fatigue and alcohol were the biggest crash contributors, she said.
On Saturday two motorcyclists on a charity toy run were killed in a collision with a van in Taranaki. Five others were hospitalised.
Two other motorcyclists and two people in cars were killed the same day in separate accidents in Opotiki, Ruakaka, Taumarunui and Paeroa. Ten others were injured in vehicle crashes.
A fifth motorcyclist was killed after a crash on the Waikato Expressway north of Huntly on Sunday.
National road policing manager Superintendent Carey Griffiths said as the holiday season approached, drivers must decide whether to drink or drive before heading out.
"Don't go out and have a couple of drinks and then try and make a decision during the night if you're going to drive home or not."
Motorcyclists needed to execute extreme caution when riding in larger groups to avoid more tragedies.
"It's just common sense. The message from me, as a fellow motorcyclist is - give yourself plenty of room - by all means, ride in a group, but just leave lots of spacing."
The "two big things" needed to keep the road toll down were common sense and being polite, Mr Griffiths said.
"It's all of those incivilities on the roads that contribute to crashes."
Last year's road toll was the lowest in over 50 years, with 284 people killed, compared with 375 in 2010, 384 in 2009 and 366 in 2008.
The last time the road toll was below 300 prior to that was in 1952 when 272 people died.
With the holiday season nearly upon us, the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) is urging teen drivers and their parents to check out the safeteendriver.co.nz website before heading away on road trips and to summer music festivals.
NZTA data shows teen drivers are most at risk of having a serious crash in the first six to 12 months of driving solo on a restricted licence.
Road toll (year to date)
Hastings toll: 10
- Drivers : 5
- Motorcyclists: 1
- Passengers: 4
Napier : 1
- Drivers: 1
Central Hawke's Bay: 2
- Passenger: 1
- Pedestrian: 1
- Drivers: 2
- Motorcyclists: 1
- Passengers: 3
Nationally 2012: 275
Nationally 2011: 256