Speed limit changes a positive move, but more needed

Road safety charity Brake says it is pleased that Auckland Transport's Board has approved the Speed Limits Bylaw which will reduce speeds on some Auckland roads.

The charity says widespread 30km/h limits in the city centre are a move in the right direction and in line with international best practice for areas with high numbers of pedestrians and cyclists. However the charity is disappointed that Hobson, Fanshawe and Nelson Streets will be 40km/h rather than 30km/h.

Hobson and Nelson Streets have large residential populations, and alongside Fanshawe Street have high numbers of pedestrians, so best practice would be to extend the 30km/h limits to those areas.

Caroline Perry, Brake's NZ director says: "Whilst we're pleased with the Board's decision to introduce 30km/h limits across much of the city centre, it's frustrating that some streets will have a 40km/h limit, when evidence tells us that we should have lower speeds. If we are to achieve the reductions in deaths and serious injuries that Auckland Transport itself sets out in its transport safety strategy, then we need to be taking a complete Vision Zero approach in line with best practice."

Brake is also pleased to see speed limit reductions on a number of rural roads in the region, and says this is a good starting point, whilst consultation feedback has demonstrated that communities also want to see speed limit reductions and safety improvements on many other roads.

"Speed is an outcome factor in every crash; the speed you're travelling at will determine the likelihood of you surviving a crash or not. We have a lot of roads where the current limit is not a safe and appropriate speed for that road, meaning there is a significant chance you would be killed or seriously injured in a crash. It's great to see these high risk roads being targeted, but the consultation has also highlighted community support for lower speeds on other roads across the region. We urge Auckland Transport to now start widening the reach of this programme, in addition to implementing the speed limit changes approved through the Bylaw", Perry said.

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