Government to hold road safety summit

2 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineMarch 29, 2018

The Government will hold a Local Government Road Safety Summit in Wellington on 9 April, as it moves to make safety a top priority for transport investment, says Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter.

“As we head into the Easter break a hundred people have already been killed on our roads this year – a 56 percent increase since 2013. My top priority in transport is to stop so many New Zealanders dying on our roads,” says Genter.

“I urge people to take care on the roads this Easter Weekend and to drive responsibly.

“We know that the vast majority of serious crashes result from simple mistakes on the road. This highlights the importance of driving fresh and not taking risks, as well as the need for Government to do its bit to make our roads safer to drive on.”

At the summit on 9 April the Government will hear directly from councils about the barriers to, and opportunities for, improving the safety of New Zealand‘s roads.

“This is just the start of a long-term Government commitment to embedding road safety in transport thinking, spending, design, and operations to make our roads safer for everyone.”

Genter says for too long, basic safety improvements and maintenance has been starved of funding while the previous government poured money into a handful of pet motorway projects.

“The Government is looking to boost investment for safety improvements like median barriers, passing lanes, and intersection upgrades on local and regional roads.

“Road deaths are not an inevitability. Twenty years ago, Sweden had the same level of road deaths as New Zealand. Today, after heavily investing in safety, it is one of the safest countries in the world to drive in. If we had the same fatality rate as Sweden, 255 people who died on our roads last year would be alive today,” says Genter.