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Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency said roading contractors have raised concerns about a "significant increase" in drivers ignoring posted speed limits at southern roadworks sites in the last few months.
The agency said there had also been recent evidence of night-time crashes, where vehicles have hit steel guardrail barriers due to excessive speed in areas still under repair or freshly sealed.
“This behaviour is a significant safety issue for our workers, for the drivers themselves and all other road users," Waka Kotahi Journey Manager for the lower South Island Peter Brown said.
“Everyone deserves to get home safely to their family and friends after a hard day’s work often in hot and uncomfortable conditions and that includes all our traffic management and roading repair crews,” he said.
Contractor concerns were raised with police, who said a number of motorists, some travelling far in excess of the temporary speed limit, had been stopped in recent days.
“This has resulted in simple education for most drivers but, in some instances, infringement notices have been necessary,” District Road Policing Manager Inspector Amelia Steel said.
Mr Brown acknowledged that multiple road works sites encountered on a journey could be frustrating, but drivers still needed to be patient and comply with speed restrictions.
Even where sites had no staff actively working on them, reduced speed limits were there to protect the road surface where it was newly sealed and prevent unnecessary damage to vehicles.