Brakes on rash moves

Weekend Herald - - DRIVEN -

Once again the road toll is un­ac­cept­ably high, and the po­lice are sug­gest­ing lower speed lim­its are the way to limit fur­ther car­nage.

has no quib­ble with the facts — 14 deaths in five days is atro­cious — but even the po­lice are not ad­vo­cat­ing a blan­ket re­duc­tion in speed lim­its.

In­stead they take the rea­son­able line that speed lim­its should be low­ered where the road con­di­tions are un­suit­able for travel at ei­ther 100km/ h, or at the re­cently agreed 110km/ h.

The prob­lem is the risk of politi­cians, anx­ious to re­spond to the ris­ing toll, want­ing to be seen to be do­ing some­thing rather than stand­ing on the side­lines.

The pre- elec­tion de­ci­sion to al­low driv­ers to travel at 110km/ h on suit­able stretches of free­ways and ex­press­ways should not come un­der threat, be­cause most of our main road in­fra­struc­ture is of du­bi­ous qual­ity.

When Driven went to press it was too early to say whether speed was TONY VERDON a fac­tor in the tragic ac­ci­dent that killed four peo­ple and in­jured a fur­ther eight north of Taupo on Tues­day. But it has been ob­vi­ous for some time that much of State High­way 1 strug­gles to cope with the vol­ume of traf­fic us­ing it. Ex­ces­sive speed plays a part in many fa­tal ac­ci­dents, but the state of the road­ing net­work must also be taken into ac­count when con­sid­er­ing what to do about the soar­ing road toll.

Far too much of our state high­way net­work can­not cope with traf­fic vol­umes us­ing it, or it fails to pro­vide a safe enough road to drive fast on. Hope­fully this sub­ject was touched on dur­ing coali­tion talks in Wellington this week.

This week the road toll stood at 296, an ap­palling fig­ure. Lets re­spond ef­fec­tively and re­sist blan­ket speed re­stric­tion. ABOUT US

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