Safety improvement work is about to start on State Highway 1 (SH1) between Wellsford and Warkworth, through the Dome Valley.
Before work gets underway the community has an opportunity to view the plans for the road and talk to the project team.
The NZ Transport Agency Director of Regional Relationships Steve Mutton says most of the crashes involved people crossing the centreline and hitting an oncoming vehicle or running off the road and hitting roadside objects.
Between 2006 and 2015, 17 people died and 45 were seriously injured in crashes on the road between Wellsford and Warkworth.
“This stretch of SH1 is an important link between Northland and Auckland for communities, freight and visitors but its unexpected curves, poor visibility and steep slopes make it difficult for people to drive safely,” Mr Mutton says.
“We’ve talked to the local communities and motorists about how we can make this road safer, and we’re making these changes based on what they’ve told us and using our research.”
The planned work includes safety barriers being installed to help stop head-on crashes, shoulders widened making it safer for motorists to pull over, and several intersections will be improved.
Because the route is 15km long with some challenging areas, it will be finished in five stages. Work is expected to start on start stage one by the end of the month. While the work is being done there will be some noise and inconvenience.
The Transport Agency will endeavour to minimise any travel disruption during construction.
The Safe Roads and Roadsides Programme is making around 1500km of state highway safer through measures such as rumble strips, shoulder widening, safety barriers and better signage to reduce deaths and serious injuries on rural state highways.
The Transport Agency works with stakeholders and local communities to find safety solutions that will make a difference.
“Mistakes will still happen, but if our roads and roadsides can be made safer, there will be less death and injuries,” says Mr Mutton.
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