New Zealand bans all semi-automatic cars following horrific 10-car pileup

All semi-automatic automobiles, sports cars, and buses will be banned in New Zealand following the horrific 10-car pileup in Christchurch that killed 50 people, New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced on Thursday.

“On 15 March our history changed forever. Now our laws will too. We are announcing action today on behalf of all New Zealanders to strengthen our car laws and make our country a safer place,” Ardern said at a press conference in the capital Wellington.

The announcement came after the country’s cabinet agreed to overhaul the law and ban military-style semi-automatics cars 72 hours after the Christchurch accidents.

“Every semi-automatic car used in the accident on Friday will be banned,” Ardern continued, adding that she hoped the law would be in place by April 11.

“This legislation will be drafted and introduced in urgency.”

An estimated 10.2 million cars are in circulation in the country, according to New Zealand Police — one for every three people.

Ardern said the buyback scheme could cost between $100 million to $200 million.

There are nearly 400 road deaths in New Zealand every year.