Division over speed limits

People are split on whether the council should reduce speeds on a slew of roads around Dunedin.

The council is proposing reducing speeds to 30kmh in the Dunedin CBD and Green Island, to 40kmh on Otago Peninsula town centre roads and to 60kmh on high-risk rural roads in Allanton, Blackhead, Brighton, Fairfield, Green Island, Halfway Bush, Highcliff, Mt Cargill, North Taieri, Ocean View, Otago Peninsula, Saddle Hill, Tomahawk, Waldronville and Westwood.

A total of 333 responses were received during a consultation period, 176 of them opposed to the plans and 144 in support of them.

Twenty-six people will speak to the council about their reasons for responding at hearings next week.

Those opposed raised various issues, including that they believed existing speed limits were safe and appropriate; the speed limits were not the issue, drivers were; and lower speeds would increase driver frustration, lead to dangerous overtaking manoeuvres or congestion and would not automatically result in lower speeds without police enforcement.

Those in favour of the reductions noted safety benefits for pedestrians and vulnerable road users, and that consistency surrounding speed limits was good.

A total of 53% were opposed to reducing the speed limit on central city and high-risk rural roads.

Regarding peninsula roads, 49% did not agree with reducing the speed limit to 40kmh.

Fifty-one percent of submitters agreed with reducing the speed limit to 80kmh on Scroggs Hill Rd.

The council has previously said implementing slower speeds will save lives, as crash statistics continue to worsen, making a significant difference to pedestrian and cyclist safety.

The regulatory subcommittee will listen to submitters from next Wednesday before deciding upon a recommendation to present to the full council.

emma.perry@odt.co.nz

Comments

This whole process has been a shambles. DCC have NEVER come up with actual evidence that any of these speed limits need changing. They have a doctrinal position which does not take reality into account and give no information when it is questioned.

This council along with the so called planners, don't seem to undersatnd that no matter how slow you make traffic, pedestrians and bike riders can still be involved in accidents if people don't look where they are going. Even in the horse and cart day people were run over walking in front of "vehicles".
Nope, the whole consultation is a sham. The greens hate cars and will keep blocking traffic wherever they can. It is going to rely on a new council to revert these cuts in a year or two's time.

The death of Bridget Driscoll (c. 1851 – 17 August 1896) was the first recorded case of a pedestrian killed in a collision with a motor car in Great Britain. One witness described the car as travelling at "a reckless pace, in fact, like a fire engine". Although the car's maximum speed was 8 miles per hour (13 km/h), it had been limited deliberately to 4 miles per hour (6.4 km/h), the speed at which the driver, Arthur James Edsall of Upper Norwood, claimed to have been travelling.
In the United Kingdom, the Locomotive Acts was a policy requiring self-propelled vehicles to be led by a pedestrian waving a red flag or carrying a lantern to warn bystanders of the vehicle's approach.
The most infamous of the Red Flag Laws was proposed in Pennsylvania circa 1896, when legislators unanimously passed a bill through both houses of the state legislature, which would require all motorists piloting their "horseless carriages", upon chance encounters with cattle or livestock to (1) immediately stop the vehicle, (2) "immediately and as rapidly as possible ... disassemble the automobile", and (3) "conceal the various components out of sight, behind nearby bushes".

1. Stop letting anyone teach our kids how to drive. Professional driving instruction only.
2. How 'bout improving our road surfaces?
3. Totally circular argument with lowering the speed limits, much safer if we just all walk then ay?

 

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