"Some of it is hard to believe, some of it is laughable... and some just plain crazy..." These are the opening words to Road Madness, and the best way to sum up this brand new series, premiering on Wednesday, February 29 th at 8pm on 3.
Hosted by comedian, Ewen Gilmour, Road Madness uses footage collected from cameras mounted in the cabs of trucks and on poles at trouble spots around the country to reveal some of the crazy and frightening driving happening on New Zealand roads every day and every night.
Ewen's a self-confessed petrol head, owning two cars and five motorbikes, including a much-prized Triumph Bonneville; he once worked as a car wrecker and radiator repairman and has a trade certificate in auto parts and drives more than 50, 000 kilometers a year doing gigs around the country. With experience like that, one would think Ewen would be somewhat hardened to seeing and hearing stories of bad driving, but even he's surprised by the driving he sees on Road Madness. "I can't get over the risks people take - overtaking in dangerous places, speeding, asleep at the wheel - it's mad, mad, mad," he says. Like the foreign tourists here for a camper-van holiday who overtake a line of four trucks on a blind bend; the local bus drivers who run red lights; the cyclists who hitch a ride by hanging onto a high speed vehicle; or the drivers who take on the barriers at level crossings - the Road Madness cameras capture the behavior behind our road crash statistics. "In fact, it makes you wonder why there aren't more people dying on our roads when you see the lunacy of some drivers," says Ewen. But it's not just confined to New Zealand - over the course of the Road Madness viewers will witness bad driving footage from countries like Australia and the U.S..