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NZTA seeking community input for SH2 Safety improvements

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Safety barriers to help stop head-on crashes, rumble strips to give drivers a wake-up call, and intersection improvements are among possible changes to State Highway 2 (SH2) between Masterton and Carterton.

The NZ Transport Agency is investigating ways to improve safety and keep traffic moving as the Wairarapa region grows, and it is inviting the community to have their say.

The NZ Transport Agency’s SH2 Masterton to Carterton team will be at Masterton’s Solway Primary School, between 2.30pm to 4.30pm on Wednesday 8 August, and at the Carterton Events Centre, between 10am to 2pm on Saturday 11 August, to share information on possible improvements and get feedback and ideas from the community.

“This stretch of SH2 is part of a key route between the Wellington region and the north,” NZTA Regional Transport Systems Manager Mark Owen says.

“It’s important for our communities, our economic development and tourism. With the increasing volume of traffic, some intersections, speed and roadside hazards like poles or ditches mean it’s also a high-risk road.”

Between 2007 and 2016, 17 people were seriously injured in crashes on the road between Masterton and Carterton. The majority of these injuries were caused by drivers running off the road and into ditches, hitting fences and poles, and  head-on crashes. More recently there have also been crashes at intersections.

“There are proven ways we can make this high-risk road much safer to help prevent crashes and support growth, but to get it right, we need the community’s help. The local people who use and live near this road know it better than anyone else. We’re keen to hear their views on what we could change.

“We’d encourage anyone who’s interested to come along and see more about this investigation, and have their say.”

People who can’t make it can still share their views online or by mail until Friday 31 August.
Mr Owen says possible improvements include:

  • putting in roadside safety barriers to stop drivers running off the road into ditches or hitting roadside hazards
  • widening the centreline or putting a barrier along the middle of the road in busy areas to help stop head-on crashes
  • improving road markings so they’re easier to see in wet weather and at night
  • widening the road shoulder in some areas to give drivers more room to recover if they lose control
  • making some intersections safer
  • putting in rumble strips to give drivers a wake-up call if they stray across the line
  • reviewing speeds so they’re safe and appropriate for the road environment
  • improving signs to warn drivers that they are approaching local communities along the route.
  • Improvements for cyclists

“We want to make sure that when drivers make mistakes they don’t result in someone dying or being seriously injured,” Mr Owen says.

“We’ll also be looking at ways to make the road more resilient to keep traffic moving. This means if there are high traffic volumes, a crash or a natural disaster, this region’s transport network can cope, both now and into the future.”

More information about the project can be found at https://www.nzta.govt.nz/projects/sh2-masterton-to-carterton/ 

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