Auckland transit road nets $3000 in fines per day
A central Auckland transit lane is netting Auckland Council on average $3000 a day in infringement notices.
In the six months from October, 3718 tickets were handed out to motorists trying to beat queues on Pah Rd in Royal Oak - totaling $557,700 in fines, or $3000 a day - more than any other transit lane in the city.
At certain times of the day transit lanes can be used only by passenger service vehicles, motorcycles and vehicles carrying the specified minimum number of passengers. Motorists making a left turn can enter a transit lane 50 metres before turning. Standard fines for single occupant vehicles travelling in a T3 lane are $150.
The Pah Rd T3 transit lane was installed in September 2016.
Auckland Transport (AT) said it conducted a warning period of three weeks prior to issuing infringements and sent out 246 warning letters.
AT media manager Mark Hannan said single occupant vehicles abusing the rules of the T3 transit lanes could end up causing more traffic.
‘‘In terms of people movement, transit and bus lanes can significantly improve efficiently,’’ Hannan said.
‘‘By dedicating a lane to vehicles carrying three or more or buses carrying in the order of 30 to 50 people per vehicle, the ability of the road to cope improves dramatically.’’
Hannan said T3 lanes were installed when a number of buses an hour reaches ‘‘in the order of 15 to 20’’.
Onehunga resident Heather Bates said she received one of the 3718 tickets earlier this year. Bates blamed a lack of signage, and said she was trying to turn left off of Pah Rd and went too early.
‘‘I was not trying to beat queues, I was legitimately trying to turn left,’’ Bates said.
‘‘I got in the T3 lane a metre or so too soon and he clicked my number plate. One hundred and fifty bucks down the drain. It’s impossible to turn left when needed as there is no proper signage and no way of knowing when the 50 metre mark starts. It’s a guessing game.’’
Hannan said AT ticket only when motorists enter the T3 lane at least 70 metres from the intersection.
Revenue from tickets went towards road projects.
‘‘I was not trying to beat queues, I was legitimately trying to turn left’’
The $557,700 collected from Pah Road’s transit lane infringement notices is used to cover ‘‘various roading projects’’, AT says.