The UN Road Safety Week campaign is calling for New Zealanders to slow down. This comes after a survey revealed that communities are concerned about speeding traffic. Last week, the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) announced that the country's new roading infrastructure can handle vehicles driving faster and that a new speed limit of 110km may be implemented in some areas.
Today marks the beginning of Road Safety Week. Over 700 organisations and groups are banding together to encourage NZ to slow down on our roads.
Director Brake NZ, Caroline Perry says, "This week is road safety week, it's also the un-global road safety week and the theme is save lives slow down so we are urging drivers, in particular, to make a positive commitment to slow down"
This comes after an announcement by the NZTA that proposes an increase in the speed limit in some areas such as the Cambridge Expressway.
NZTA Road Saftey Director, Harry Wilson says, "There's certain types of roads like the Cambridge Expressway where we believe it is safe for people to increase their speed to 110."
However, Brake New Zealand doesn't agree. They are concerned that an increase in speed could result in increased mortality rates.
Perry says, "We're concerned in terms of having 110 kilometres on certain roads that that could lead to an increase in deaths and serious injuries and at the moment we're already increasing in terms of the numbers of deaths we have on our roads."
Wilson says, "The road has certain really key features it's median divided wire ropes down the middle, no direct property access onto the road, all the intersections are grade separated so they're very specific engineering standard that we think it's appropriate that people should be able to drive at that speed"
Before any ruling can be made, there will be a six-week consultation process and each road will undergo individual consultation thereafter.