Taking stock: Stay safe on rural roads


Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency and the NZ Police are reminding motorists and rural property owners in the East Waikato to be vigilant to keep our rural roads safe over the holiday break.

Transport Agency Waikato System Manager Rob Campbell says motorists should be prepared, patient and slow down on rural roads.

“Rural roads are not designed for high speeds. They can be windy, narrow, have loose metal and you never know what is around the corner. Quad bikes, large farm vehicles, campervans, people towing boats and wandering stock are all common hazards on these roads.

“Animals on highways present a significant safety risk for motorists and there is the potential for serious injury, and even fatal crashes, as a result.”

In June this year there was a fatal crash on State Highway 25, where a motorcyclist collided with a cow.

NZ Police Waikato District Intelligence Supervisor Dr Deane Searle says police receive approximately 500 calls about stock on East Waikato roads each year.

“This is a public safety issue. Cattle on roads puts the lives of road users and the cattle at risk.”

Dr Searle encouraged farmers to check gates have been closed if they’ve had contractors on their farm and stressed the importance of maintaining good boundary fences.

“Check your fences before stock enter boundary paddocks and take care with temporary road grazing fences. Ensure they are in good condition and conducting power well. Make sure you have a stock manager available when stock are grazing the road side.

“These are some basic steps that can help protect your stock and your community.”

People are asked to report any wandering stock to the Transport Agency by phoning 0800 4 HIGHWAYS.

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