Safer speeds proposed for SH6 between Blenheim and Nelson


The NZ Transport Agency is reviewing speed limits on State Highway 6 between Blenheim and Nelson in an effort to save lives and reduce the incidence of serious crashes along the high-risk road.

In the 10 years between 2009 and 2018, 20 people lost their lives and 92 were seriously injured in crashes on this stretch of highway. Nineteen of the deaths were on 100km/h stretches of road.

“We’ve been speaking with local people, councils, businesses, and other organisations about how we can make this road safer and some people told us that speeds along this route feel too high to be safe,” says Transport Agency Director Regional Relationships Jim Harland.

“There are numerous communities and schools on State Highway 6, it’s popular with cyclists, busy with freight and commuters, and there are school children and others crossing the road in 100km/hour environments.

“We are investigating other improvements such as safety barriers, but one of the immediate actions we can take right now to prevent people from dying or being seriously injured is to reduce speed limits, so they are safe and right for the road.”

The Transport Agency is now formally asking for public submissions about proposals to change the speed limits on SH6 between Blenheim and Nelson.

“We are proposing to reduce speeds along the route, and we would like people to tell us if there are any other factors we should consider before we make a decision,” says Mr Harland.

Formal consultation for this speed review is open from Tuesday October 15 until 5pm on 12 November 2019, with a decision expected in the following months.

  • The Blenheim to Nelson speed review is one of three happening across the top of the South Island, with reviews of SH60 between Upper Takaka and Takaka and SH6 between Hope and Wakefield starting in coming weeks.

How to have your say:

Estimated extra travel times

Location Extra travel time if new speeds are adopted
SH6 Blenheim to Nelson 9 minutes extra
Blenheim to Woodbourne 36 seconds
Renwick to Havelock 4 minutes
Through Havelock 3 seconds
Havelock to Pelorus 1 minute 14 seconds
Pelorus to Rai Valley 30 seconds
Rai Valley to Collins Valley 1 minute
Through Collins Valley 23 seconds
Whangamoa to Atawhai 26 seconds
Atawhai to Nelson 41 seconds

Map of proposed speed changes

Five students from Pelorus Community Preschool with their teacher Lisa Brown on the left looking at a map of the speed review area which is laid out on a table.

Pupils of the Pelorus Community Preschool with their teacher Lisa Brown, left, attended the information session in Havelock on SH6 earlier this year.

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