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Plan ahead to avoid delays and stay safe over Labour weekend

With Labour Day creating the first long weekend after winter, state highways in Auckland and Northland will be busy and the NZ Transport Agency is reminding drivers to plan ahead to avoid delays and stay safe.

'When you combine the higher number of cars on the road, tiredness and driving on unfamiliar roads it can create stressful driving situations which can in turn lead to mistakes,' says the Transport Agency’s Auckland and Northland Regional Director, Ernst Zöllner.

'Reducing your speed and increasing your following distances play a major role in minimising the potentially serious consequences of those mistakes.'

'There’s a lot of construction and maintenance happening on state highways across Auckland and Northland and we ask motorists to slow down through these sites. Even when there’s not obvious work taking place there are hazards that mean you should keep within the reduced speed limit to keep yourselves, your families and other road users safe. It also reduces damage to what can be newly surfaced or repaired roads.'

Top tips for safe Labour Weekend travel

  • Take time to make sure your vehicle is safe before hitting the road
  • Do not drink and drive
  • Allow plenty of time, avoid the need to rush, share the driving and enjoy the journey
  • Plan your route and your time of travel to avoid congestion

Plan ahead to avoid congestion

The Transport Agency has again published data based on previous Labour Weekends which shows the areas and times that are mostly likely to be congested. They can be found at www.nzta.govt.nz/hotspots.(external link)(external link)

'We know that one of the biggest pinch points is on State Highway 1 between Puhoi and Kawakawa, and at Warkworth in particular. Traffic will start building on Friday afternoon and continue through until Saturday morning for people getting away and on pick up again on Monday from mid-morning as everyone heads home again,' says Mr Zöllner.

'It’s also particularly busy heading south out of Auckland on SH1 from midday on Friday until around 8pm and then again on Saturday from about 9am, and picks up again heading north to Auckland from lunchtime on Monday through until 7pm.'

The State Highway 1 and State Highway 2 Interchange from Coromandel is another place you’re likely to hit heavy traffic, especially around the middle of the day on Monday.

'If you can travel outside of these busiest times it will help reduce your chances of being stuck in a queue and help keep traffic moving.'

A more detailed breakdown of the congestion hotspots is attached.

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