Road crossing fraught

Shar Carlini and her grandson Bodie Morris (4) of Dunedin, cross Princes St at the Exchange....
Shar Carlini and her grandson Bodie Morris (4) of Dunedin, cross Princes St at the Exchange. Photo by Linda Robertson.
Spasmodic traffic lights at the Princes and Rattray Sts intersection and a ''ridiculous'' traffic management plan has made crossing dangerous, Dunedin grandmother Shar Carlini says.

The traffic lights being switched off intermittently and a lack of signs warning motorists of the outage were annoying, she said.

Confusion among motorists made crossing the intersection difficult for pedestrians, especially when walking with a young child.

''It is ridiculous. There is nothing that tells you what's going on ... Why isn't there a traffic management plan?''

When the lights were switched off, a plan should require a pointsman to control traffic and direct pedestrians, she said.

Without a pointsman, crossing the chaotic intersection was nerve-racking, she said.

''You have to make a dash for it and hope for the best.''

She challenged Dunedin City Council staff to navigate the intersection with a child.

Council transportation projects engineer Evan Matheson said lamps in the lights were being replaced and signal timings adjusted slightly to make the intersections safer.

The traffic lights would be switched on permanently by the end of this week.

The 30kmh speed restriction would be lifted, too, he said.

Motorists and pedestrians should expect the lights to be switched off this week and should proceed with caution.

A traffic management plan was in place and warning signs about the outage, roadworks and speed restriction ahead were adequate, he said.

A pointsman would not be appointed, as contractors were expected to observe traffic and pedestrian behaviour and help on a ''case-by-case'' basis.

Mr Matheson said he would not accept the challenge to cross the intersection with a child.

''I understand it is difficult to cross at the moment and there has to be courteous driving to allow pedestrians to cross in a safe manner.

"There is responsibility on everyone while the lights are out.''

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