Reduced speed limits have been introduced for State Highway 51 between Napier and Hastings


Reduced speed limits for State Highway 51 between Napier and Hastings begin October 29.  (File photo)

Ricky Wilson / Stuff

Reduced speed limits for State Highway 51 between Napier and Hastings begin October 29. (File photo)

Waka Kotahi NZ transport agency reduced speed limits on State Highway 51 between Napier and Hastings after five people were killed and 28 others seriously injured between 2010 and 2019.

The agency consulted the public earlier this year on proposed gear changes for Marine Parade’s SH51 in Waipatu – this comes after the community demanded that gears be lowered and road ratings showed that it was a high accident risk.

Starting October 29, the permanent speed limits from Napier to Clive will be increased from 100 km / h to 80 km / h, Township of Clive will be increased to 60 km / h, and Waipatu will be reduced from 70 km / h to 60 km / h.

“The region is developing rapidly and this road is one of the busiest in the region. People use it to commute to work, school or the marae, to visit family or friends, or to go to the supermarket, ”said the agency’s regional relations director, Linda Stewart.

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“Wherever they go, everyone should be able to go and come back safely. “

“The new speed limits are the safe and appropriate speeds for this road and are consistent with the speeds people are currently traveling on the road,” said Stewart.

Between 2010 and 2019, five people were killed and 28 seriously injured on SH51 between Marine Parade and Waipatu.  (File photo)

Andy Jackson / Stuff

Between 2010 and 2019, five people were killed and 28 seriously injured on SH51 between Marine Parade and Waipatu. (File photo)

“Fewer serious accidents will also mean fewer closures, which will increase the reliability of this important route.”

But not everyone was impressed with the gear changes – Hastings Mayor Sandra Hazlehurst said the Waipatu community had been abandoned.

“While it is nice to see reduced speed limits, the community of Waipatu had safety concerns and had advocated that the speed limit in the community be reduced to 50 km / h and applied to a stretch of longer road, ”Hazlehurst said.

“The community of Waipatu and our council preferred that the speed limit be reduced for this section of road from 70 km / h to 50 km / h.

From October 29, the permanent speed limits from Napier to Clive will increase from 100 km / h to 80 km / h, Township of Clive will increase to 60 km / h and Waipatu / Hastings will increase from 70 km / h to 60 km / h.  (File photo)

kevin stent / stuff

From October 29, the permanent speed limits from Napier to Clive will increase from 100 km / h to 80 km / h, Township of Clive will increase to 60 km / h and Waipatu / Hastings will increase from 70 km / h to 60 km / h. (File photo)

“We can accept 60 km / h, but what the community really wanted was the extension of a reduced speed limit to Te Ara Kahikatea Dr.”

The decision not to extend the reduction in the speed limit seemed absurd, Hazlehurst said.

Stewart said the agency had not proposed reducing the speed limit for the SH51 between St Georges Rd and Ruahapia or extending the 60 km / h from Kenilworth Rd to include Bay Espresso due to the proposed safety improvement SH51 Waipatu Marae.

Waka Kotahi NZ transport agency to announce decision to revise Napier-Taupō Rd at year's end (file photo)

John Cowpland / Stuff

Waka Kotahi NZ transport agency to announce decision to revise Napier-Taupō Rd at year’s end (file photo)

“This project changes the route of the road along this section of road, with a widening and a flush median being installed. These safety improvements will allow safer turns and vehicle separation in this area. “

The consultation for the review of the SH51 speed limit was combined with the consultation on the proposal to lower the speed limit on a section of the Napier to Taupō Highway (National Highway 5) from Rangiataiki to Esk Valley.

The agency will announce the decision for SH5 speeds once the road technical review and analysis is complete. The decision was expected by the end of the year.

THING

Speed ​​limits are too high on the majority of New Zealand’s roads, according to the NZ Transport Agency. (Video first published in June 2019)


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