Most fines forWhitford Brown going uphill
Well over half the fines issued by the Whitford Brown Ave speed camera have been for motorists travelling up the hill, police figures show.
In the first nine months of 2015, more than $1.1 million worth of infringement notices were handed out to drivers clocked travelling faster than 54kmh along the road.
Data given to Kapi-Mana News shows that of the 15,273 fines issued, 8574 were to motorists going up the road and 6699 for those heading down.
Porirua City Council set the speeds for Porirua roads and Peter Bailey, its general manager of asset management and operations, said he was not hugely surprised to hear the statistics.
‘‘We’ve found drivers have a natural tendency to be careful going downhill,’’ he said.
Many readers have suggested the speed limit is too severe for that road – it was reduced from 70kmh to 50kmh in 2008 – but Bailey said a suburban road, with a school nearby and upgrades planned, should be 50kmh.
Grays Rd was not a suburban road and could thus be 60kmh, he said.
The texture of a 50kmh road’s surface was also important, Bailey said. ‘‘We use a seal that works well in dry conditions, but when it’s wet, the surface friction drops. We do not use the same material that state highways have because of the higher cost and not needing to replace it as often.
‘‘Our roads are suited to 50kmh speeds, not 70kmh. If you push your car above that limit, there’s a good chance you will lose control.’’
Bailey said there were no plans to raise the 50kmh limit in Whitford Brown Ave, nor would the council be putting up ‘‘speed camera area’’ or ‘‘go slow’’ signs.
Another issue raised is how often the speed camera is tested for accuracy. Acting national manager road policing Inspector Peter McKennie said all cameras were tested annually.
The Whitford Brown Ave camera’s alignment and two radars was certified for accuracy in September 2014 and June 2015, McKennie said.
Kapi-Mana News is still seeking statistics on crashes in Whitford Brown Ave from NZ Transport Agency before and after the speed limit was changed in 2008.
The Whitford Brown Ave speed camera has been working overtime since it was installed in September 2014.