With traffic expected to be heavy over Labour Weekend as holiday makers travel south to enjoy the warm weather in the Waikato, Coromandel and Bay of Plenty regions, the NZ Transport Agency is advising motorists to plan ahead for their travels and to allow additional time as traffic volumes are expected to be high at the start and end of the long weekend.
Regional Highways Managers Kaye Clark and Brett Gliddon says "Motorists need to follow basic safety rules such as keeping to the speed limit, watching following distances and be courteous to other road users.
“All motorists including motorcyclists, need to be mindful about sharing the road and respect each other’s use of the road,” says Mrs Clark.
In respect to the Coromandel area Mrs Clark is also urging motorcyclists to take care if planning day trip rides around the area "We'd like to encourage motorcyclists to check out the six top tips for keeping safe when riding motorcycles on our roads at www.reducetherisk.co.nz(external link). The Transport Agency website www.nzta.govt.nz(external link) also has information for motorcyclists online and a motorcyclists’ guide, ‘Safer Journeys for Motorcycling on New Zealand Roads’. It's all about being seen, watching speeds, wearing protective gear, increasing your riding skills, maintaining a safe bike and driving to the conditions.”
Both highway managers say the Transport Agency has stopped all road works activity on the state highway network over Labour Weekend to enable smoother flows for holiday traffic. This excludes any emergency work.
"We want everyone to enjoy their holidays by making sure they reach their desired destinations safely. There’s no need to rush if you allow plenty of time to get there and allow for regular breaks too if you are travelling far, both highways managers said.
Mr Gliddon says “The Agency provides a range of free information on their website or by calling a freephone number so motorists can identify what the highway conditions are like before they set off on their trips, there are also tips about how to check your vehicle to ensure it is safe before you head out on the road.”
This information is available at www.nzta.govt.nz/traffic(external link) or by calling the NZTA freephone 0800 4HIGHWAYS (0800 44 44 49).
The Transport Agency also uses other technology to provide information to enable drivers to make better informed choices about their travel. On The Move is a free service which enables people to sign up for information about crashes, road works and driving conditions on their frequently used routes - to sign up, go to www.onthemove.govt.nz(external link).