Road safety charity Brake is welcoming Auckland Transport's plans to make Auckland CBD a 30km/h speed limit, and says it will help to save lives and reduce injuries, protect people out on foot and bike, and encourage more active travel.
The charity says the lower speed limit will help to reduce the risk of death and serious injury to people on foot and bike. Drivers have a much better chance of stopping in time if a pedestrian or cyclist makes a mistake, and if a crash occurs, the chance of survival is much higher. At 30km/h, if a pedestrian is hit by a car they have a 90% chance of survival.
Having 30km/h speed limits in communities has been proven to be effective in protecting vulnerable road users in other countries and are becoming increasingly popular overseas, particularly in Europe. Brake is also calling for more 30km/h limits around the country, outside schools and in communities.
Caroline Perry, Brake's NZ director said: "Everyone has a right to walk or cycle to school, work or for leisure, health or enjoyment, so we fully support Auckland Transport's plans to make the CBD speed limit 30km/h. Research shows that 30km/h limits in communities reduce the number of deaths and injuries and result in an increase in the number of people walking and cycling in those areas. We know fears about fast traffic prevent many adults and children from reaping the benefits of cycling and walking, so support measures such as this which both improve safety and encourage active travel.
"We need more 30km/h in communities and outside schools across New Zealand to enable children to get to and from school safely, people to walk and cycle in safety and to help create safer and healthier communities."
- At 30km/h, your stopping distance is approx. 18 metres, at 50km/h it's approx. 36 metres.
- It's estimated that for every 2km/h drop in speeds, crash rates fall by an average of 5% .
- Being hit at 30km/h is roughly the same impact as falling from the first floor window of a building. At 50km/h it's roughly the same impact as falling from the fourth floor.
 Speed, Speed Limits and Accidents, Transport Research Laboratory, 1994