Safer speed limits proposed for SH2 – formal consultation now open

3 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineOctober 23, 2019

The NZ Transport Agency is reviewing speed limits along State Highway 2 between Katikati and Tauranga in an effort to save lives and prevent serious injuries from crashes along this high-risk road.

“In the 10 years from 2009 to 2018, 27 people lost their lives and 77 were seriously injured in crashes on this section of SH2, causing immeasurable grief and suffering for families and communities,” says acting director of regional relationships Ross I‘Anson.

There are more vehicles, including heavy vehicles, using this section of SH2 than ever before and it‘s catering to a wide range of competing travel needs including cyclists and school children. In addition, crashes on this route can cause extensive delays and long detours if there are road closures.

“We‘re currently making SH2 between Waihi and Omokoroa safer by improving intersections and installing roadside safety barriers, widening the road shoulder and putting in a wide centreline. These safety improvements are already well under way and, together with the right speed limit, will make SH2 safer for everyone.

I‘Anson says the evidence is overwhelming that lower speeds reduce the frequency and severity of crashes.

“Our analysis has shown that the current 100km/h and 90km/h speed limits on SH2 are not safe and appropriate for the road. The evidence also shows that average travel speeds on the road are already well below the current speed limits.” 

The NZTA is now formally asking for feedback from stakeholders and the public about proposals to change the speed limits along SH2 between Katikati and Tauranga.

“This feedback will be considered by the agency before it makes decisions on these proposed speed limit changes. The consultation period provides a month to give feedback on the proposed changes,” I‘Anson says.

The formal consultation period runs from 21 October to 18 November 2019.

The proposed speed limit changes are:

  • Lower the open road speed limit between Katikati and Bethlehem from the current mix of 100/90km/h to 80km/h

  • Lower the Pahoia School variable speed zone from 70km/h to 60km/h

  • Lower the speed limit through the Te Puna township from 80km/h to 60km/h

  • Extend the 50km/h speed limit at Bethlehem to be 135m west of Te Puna Station Road.

The public can make a submission on the proposed changes by:

Feedback closes 5pm on Monday 18 November 2019.