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Pilot project flies solar studs

10 April 2006

Pilot project flies solar studs

An innovative road safety project is being piloted in Ngapipi Road, Orakei, in a bid to reduce night-time crashes.

High-tech solar studs have been installed along the centre line and edge of Ngapipi Road in a trial to improve road safety on one of the city's hazardous routes.

"In five years, there have been 58 loss of control crashes reported on the road, with more than 90 per cent of crashes occurring in wet and dark, or overcast conditions," says Auckland City traffic safety manager, Karen Hay.

The local initiative has been significantly funded by the Eastern Bays Community Board, which supports the move to reduce the incidence of crashes along Ngapipi Road.

"Both the council and the board are determined to reduce the crash risk in the Eastern Bays and make our city's roads safer," says Ms Hay.

Reflective raised road markers, known as solar studs, are being trialled to evaluate their effectiveness in reducing crashes due to loss-of-control.

The studs will better delineate dangerous stretches, giving out a small light directed towards oncoming traffic during dark and poor light conditions.

They have replaced every second raised reflective pavement marker (cats eyes) already installed along the road, with closer stud spacing around tight curves.

The success of the solar studs relates to the site's crash record and this will take time to assess. An initial assessment will be completed in six to twelve months time and a final evaluation in three to five years.


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