Lumsden, Southland, speed review outcome announced

2 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineSeptember 21, 2020

The NZ Transport Agency has set a new permanent speed limit on SH94, Lumsden, in Southland, to take effect in a month‘s time from Friday 16 October.

In Lumsden the existing 50kph speed limit in the town will be extended 300 metres closer to Gore on the eastern side.

Strong growth in visitor numbers to both Queenstown and Milford Sound in the past five years has driven increasing traffic volumes on this section of highway. In 2018, the average daily traffic count between Gore and Lumsden was 2630, up 16% on 2014. These rises and the associated road safety risk motivated several residents to ask for an extended lower speed limit on the eastern side of the town.

The change comes after public consultation in 2019 with 48 submissions largely supportive of the extended 50kph area.

The new speed limit aims to help prevent people from being killed or seriously injured, says NZTA director of regional relationships Jim Harland.

“No crash resulting in death or serious injury is acceptable, so it‘s important we take every opportunity to address the risk. Fewer crashes will also mean fewer closures, which will increase the reliability of this important transport route,” he says.

Southland District Council mayor Gary Tong is also happy with the outcome of the speed review.

“The community raised a safety concern which resulted in a collaborative response.  As communities change, locals can identify issues and it pays to listen to those concerns and act on them as necessary.  This is a prime example of everyone working together and doing their best to improve safety,” says Tong.

New speed signs will be installed ahead of the change taking legal effect on Friday 16 October.