Safety improvements for SH2: Pakipaki to Waipukurau

3 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineJuly 31, 2018

The NZ Transport Agency is sharing its latest plans for safety improvements to SH2 between Pakipaki and Waipukurau.

Acting senior manager, system management Wayne Oldfield says the planned improvements will help prevent people from being killed and seriously injured on this road.

From 2006 to 2015, 13 people were killed and 62 were seriously injured on SH2 between Pakipaki and Waipukurau. Most of these crashes happened when drivers lost control and drove off the road, or crossed the centreline and crashed head-on into another vehicle.

“We‘re planning changes that are proven to prevent crashes like these. These include putting in road safety barriers along the side and centre of the road, widening road shoulders and putting in rumble strips along the centre lines and edge lines,” Oldfield says.

A decision has also been made to remove the southbound passing lane on SH2 between Waipawa and Waipukurau. Investigations have shown that this is increasing the crash risk for people using the southern Tapairu Road/SH2 intersection.

“Because the passing lane finishes just after this intersection, it can be tricky for people to get onto and off the highway. This passing lane is already very short which means making it end before the intersection is not an option, and so the safest action we can take is to remove it.”

Other changes are planned that will make it safer to turn into or out of Tapairu Road. At the southern Tapairu Road/SH2 intersection, a new right-turn bay will be created so it‘s easier to turn into or out of Tapairu Road.

“We will also talking to the community and road users in the near future to get their views on options for the northern Tapairu Road/SH2 intersection,” Oldfield says.

“We know it can be hard for drivers to see oncoming cars when they‘re turning right in or out of the Northern Tapairu Road/SH2 intersection and we are looking at options to improve safety in this location.”

Work on safety improvements to SH2 between Pakipaki and Waipukurau is planned to start in October 2018, and should be completed by June 2019.