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About a third of rumble strips installed as part of a $600,000 project on the road to Kingston have been removed after less than six months.
The NZ Transport Agency is citing concerns from cyclists as the reason for the removal of the strips, which were installed as part of a major safety project.
It comes just weeks after several serious crashes, including two fatals, on the stretch of State Highway 6.
Wakatipu Cycling Club Queenstown president Dallas McLister says the club raised concerns with NZTA, saying the strips made the road “really dangerous” for cyclists.
“It puts us right out in the middle of the road,” he says.
With some motorists having a “f*** you, you shouldn’t be on the roads” view of cyclists, that’s not exactly safe, he says.
He believes rumble strips in the centre of the road are important, but unnecessary on the side.
“If you drive off the side of the road you kind of deserve to have a crash.”
NZTA tells Scene strips have been scrapped from a 6km stretch of the road, about a third of the 17.4km initially installed.
System manager Graeme Hall says NZTA worked with local cycling groups to look at specific sites where they felt that rumble strips were a concern for cyclists.
The cost of removal was “less than $10,000”, Hall says.
Concerns raised by locals in recent weeks following a spate of serious crashes were met with reassurance from NZTA that safety work had been done on the road earlier in the year.
Hall says while some of the rumble strips have been removed, 1,670 metres of road safety barriers and 103 warning signs were also installed on SH6.
“Lane markings may also be adjusted and passing opportunities will be considered and assessed for inclusion during the next National Land Transport planning process.”