One man died on Christchurch Southern Motorway on Friday around 9 p.m.; one Indian man killed in Bay of Plenty single-vehicle car crash on Saturday morning- the accompanying passenger was taken to the hospital in a critical condition.

One woman died when her car crashed a bank in the Banks Peninsula, Canterbury at noon on Saturday; and around 2 p.m. [Saturday] a person was killed when the van they were in rolled on Mt Cook Road, north of Twizel- another person was taken to hospital with serious injuries.

Four deaths within the 24-hours of the holiday period starting has worried the police, and they have appealed the public to be attentive and drive safely on the roads.

“The last thing Police want to do is turn up on a loved one’s doorstep in the days before Christmas and tell them someone is dead,” National Manager Road Policing, Superintendent Steve Greally said.

“Police are extremely saddened by the four deaths that have occurred on our roads over the last 24 hours.

“This is a truly horrific start to the holiday season.

“We cannot imagine how this will impact the families of those involved at what is supposed to be a happy time of year, our hearts go out to them,” Superintendent Greally said.

“We need the message to get through – when you’re driving, you need to take on board the responsibility that goes with it.

“This means giving driving your full attention, always wearing your seatbelt, and not driving drunk, drugged, or fatigued.

“With more people on the roads over the holiday season, and with the bad weather forecast for a number of regions in the coming days, it’s also crucial that you drive to the conditions.

“We want everyone to make it where they’re going safely, and to be around to spend the holidays with their loved ones,”  Superintendent Greally appealed.