Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


NZ slow to reduce speeds to the detriment of road safety

New Zealand slow to reduce speeds to the detriment of road safety

March 23, 2014

New Zealand has been slow to reduce traffic speeds in cities to the detriment of its road safety record, particularly for walking and cycling, a University of Canterbury (UC) transport expert says.

Dr Glen Koorey, a member of the New Zealand Transport Agency panel on cycle safety, says speed is the main safety issue facing the country’s road toll.

Dr Koorey, a UC transport engineering lecturer, addressed the Automobile Association national conference in New Plymouth this week today about cycling and highlighted the role that speed management plays in providing for safer cycling.

To help identify patterns in New Zealand crashes, Dr Koorey has produced a report on common patterns in cycling fatalities. From crash records and reports, more than 90 cycling fatalities were identified between 2006 and 2013.

Providing lower speed environments was directly identified as being a key preventative factor in only 11 percent of the fatalities. However, Dr Koorey found the survivability of virtually all cycling fatalities would be greatly improved if lower impact speeds were present.

``Latest (2013) statistics show a 15 percent increase in cycle commuting nationally. There’s a lot more desire out there to do more cycling, but the perceived existing safety environment is not helping,’’ Dr Koorey says.

``Although we tend to perform slightly better than similar countries like the United States, Canada and Australia, we do lag behind most European countries where commuting rates of five to 10 percent are not uncommon and some are above 20 percent, like The Netherlands and Demark.

``The countries with the best cycle safety records do not have cycleways everywhere; even they couldn't afford to do that. But what they do have typically are traffic calming and 30km per hour limits in urban residential or CBD areas and also lower speed limits on some rural routes. That makes a huge difference to the likelihood and severity of cycle collisions.

``Both speed management and cycling infrastructure is relatively inexpensive. We currently spend less than one percent of our national transport budget on cycling and walking projects, despite 18 percent of all trips undertaken these ways.

Dr Koorey says cities in New Zealand are just starting to realise the potential for safer cycling provision and speed management.

``Christchurch is embarking on a $69 million major cycleways programme, which may seem a lot but is probably only three to percent of the amount we will be investing in transport in the city over the next decade. They are also proposing a 30km speed zone in the central city that will greatly encourage more walking and cycling.’’

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>

ALSO:

Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news