Auckland Transport Proceeds at Glacial Pace in Lowering Urban and Rural Speed-limits (and subsequent carnage)

10% of our roads will be up for speed limit reviews

Auckland Transport was never the fastest organisation to even react to what goes on around it. With serious and deaths on Auckland roads rising 72% between 2013-2017 AT’s movement in fixing this sad statistic is nothing but glacial. 

But wait he have some action from the Board of Auckland Transport:

Board approves draft speed bylaw for consultation

11/12/2018 04:18 p.m.

Dozens of lives will be saved and hundreds of serious injuries will be prevented if safe speeds are introduced across high-risk Auckland roads.

The Auckland Transport Board has approved the Draft Speed Limits Bylaw 2019, with public consultation to take place early next year.

The draft bylaw, which is part of AT’s Regional Fuel Tax funded programme to improve road safety, would see speed limits reduced on 10 percent of Auckland’s roads. Between 2013 and 2017 there has been a dramatic increase in the number of speed related deaths and serious injuries.

In 2017, 28 people died in speed related crashes. Historically, inappropriate speed has contributed to more than 20 percent of all deaths and serious injuries on Auckland’s roads.

AT Chief Executive Shane Ellison says if adopted, lower speed limits on high-risk roads will be a significant step in Auckland’s journey to improve road safety.

“Setting safe speeds is one of the quickest and most effective tools we have in reducing road trauma,” he says.

“The public will now have their say on our safe speed proposals early next year, and for Auckland Transport to continue its work to make our streets safer for everyone.”

If the proposal is adopted following consultation, AT would initially begin its Safe Speed Programme in the city centre, some town centres and approximately 770km of high-risk rural and urban roads around the region. Infrastructure improvements will also be made to the roads subject to speed limit changes, to make road corridors and intersections safer.

Any proposed speed limit changes would come into effect later in 2019 following consultation in February and March, and adoption of the bylaw.

Source: Auckland Transport

10% of our roads up for review, hardly visionary nor bold given the size of Auckland and the poor driving behaviour leading to death and injury at that. I would say glacial from AT but even glaciers move faster than our transport organisation does in terms of road safety. 

I did ask Auckland Transport why the slowness and rather surprisingly the reply was quick:

So Auckland Transport is bound by law to consult on saving lives. AT could have been more creative and gone to the Governing Body of Auckland Council and ask them to be chief advocates to the Minister of Transport Phil Twyford saying Auckland’s road safety is a complete disaster can you expedite the process and allow it to cover 100% of our roads. In other words an Order in Council from the Minister. Remember this is people’s health and safety to move through a city without undue risk we are talking about. 

However, the AT Board and Executive Management are not really going outside the box here. So with that the original tweet stands: IT IS ALL ABOUT THE FLOW. 

I will not even bother with comments from the AA about them screaming about how dare we lower speed limits as they were just pitiful. 

If you had gathered my general annoyance towards Auckland Transport rather than YAY you would be right. I am not a fan of glacial change from an agency known to be well glacial when it comes to change. 

If the percentage of roads reviewed was say 50% then it would be something worth going YAY over.