Speed limits scrapped, some fines may be refunded

Temporary speed limit trials around the Queenstown Lakes district have been scrapped, and some drivers may have fines for breaching the limits refunded.

The move comes in light of last week’s revelation that the temporary limits installed by the Queenstown Lakes District Council violated land transport rules.

More than a dozen roads around the district are affected, including Frankton Marina, Centennial Ave, Arrowtown-Lake Hayes Rd, Cardrona Valley Rd, Aubrey Rd and Ballantyne Rd.

Council spokeswoman Rebecca Pitts said that while some of the trials were indeed cut short due to being in violation of the land transport rules, it was ‘‘timely’’ as the council was set to review the speed limit bylaw in the coming months.

Stuff last night reported police were reviewing speed infringement notices on the affected roads to ascertain if any were invalid.

Acting road policing manager Inspector Mike Brooklands told Stuff ‘‘any infringement notices found to be invalid will be cancelled and any fees that have been paid will be refunded.

‘‘If demerit points have been given, they will be removed from the driver licence record by the NZ Transport Agency.’’

Queenstown Lakes District Council general manager property and infrastructure Peter Hansby said the trials, some of which began as far back as 2011, had been valuable in understanding the effects and advantages of reduced speeds in key locations.

‘‘We trialled reduced speed limits on a number of priority roads and within town centres following safety concerns and feedback from local residents and drivers. Now that the trials are complete, we’ll be reinstating the original speed limits and signage while we work on a more permanent solution for managing speed in these areas,’’ he said.

Councillors will be asked to consider a report at a full council meeting on March 7 that would start a formal public consultation process on a revised Speed Limits Bylaw for the district. If approved, consultation could begin in the middle of next month.

sean.nugent@odt.co.nz

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