From today we are welcoming submissions on our proposed speed limit bylaw.
This is one of the most important consultations Auckland Transport will be running this year, and we want to encourage Aucklanders to find out more about why we want to set safe and appropriate speeds on our roads and have their say.
Too many people are dying or are seriously injured on our roads. In 2017 over 800 people were killed or seriously injured on Auckland’s roads. Speed is a key contributing factor that we can quickly do something about.
Quite simply, our rapidly deteriorating road safety situation is unacceptable. Behind every one of those statistics is a son, daughter, mother, father, friend, or other members of your whānau and our wider community.
We are proposing to lower speeds in the city centre to 30km/h because of the huge numbers of people walking, cycling and using scooters. We are also planning changes on high-risk rural roads where the existing speeds are no longer appropriate or safe.
This consultation isn’t about speeding. This is about the existing legal speed limit, which in some places is no longer safe. I’ve talked previously about why it is so important for us to reduce speeds.
Essentially, If you are a person walking or cycling and you get hit by a vehicle travelling 50km/h, you have an 80 per cent chance of dying or being seriously injured. If you reduce the speed to 30km/h, that risk drops to 10 per cent.
We appreciate that there will be some parties that disagree with the independent research around the impact of different speeds, but for us, the priority is to make our roads safe for the most people.
There will also be people who are concerned that their journey time will be slower. The modelling we’ve done, and other local and international research, show the impact on journey times to be minimal – we’re talking a number of seconds per kilometre. And the question we’d encourage people to ask themselves is, is it too much to ask to slow down to save a life?
Submissions are open for a month, closing on Sunday 31 March 2019.
I would urge all Aucklanders, and indeed anyone with an interest in safety or transport in the region, to have their say.