Haywards Hill claims another victim
A treacherous stretch of road linking the Kapiti Coast with Hutt Valley was last week the scene of the second loss of life in less than four months.
Upper Hutt man Richard van der Linden, 28, was killed and two other people were taken to hospital after a three-vehicle crash on State Highway 58 at Haywards Hill, between Pauatahanui and Hutt Valley, early Thursday morning.
The crash closed the road for several hours.
NZ Transport Agency has pledged to look into safety concerns over the black spot between Mt Cecil Rd and State Highway 2.
Between 2009 and last year, two deaths and 14 serious injury crashes happened there.
‘‘[We] will be carrying out an immediate and full investigation in conjunction with other road safety authorities to understand what caused the crash and what might be done to prevent similar tragedies,’’ NZTA Wellington highways manager Rod James said.
The agency was exploring a lower speed limit and other options, on which the public would be consulted later this year.
According to the KiwiRAP road assessment programme, the road has a black rating – the most dangerous – for ‘‘ collective’’ driving risk and a low-medium rating for personal risk.
That means that, while the chances of individuals having a serious accident are relatively low, the level of traffic ensures many accidents.
It ranks the Rimutaka Hill Road as the region’s worst, giving it a ‘‘double black’’ rating.