Project introduction

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency has set new permanent speed limits for SH5 through Waiotapu.

  • Project type

    Speed review
  • Project status


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SH5 Waiotapu speed limit

Between 30 September and 25 October 2019, Waka Kotahi consulted with the public regarding the speed limit on SH5 through Waiotapu.

With a number of businesses and intersections leading to tourist destinations in Waiotapu, vehicles are slowing down to turn off to these locations, while those travelling through are continuing to travel at 100km/h. There is also limited space for traffic to safely turn and the current road layout makes it hard for drivers to see what’s ahead.  As a result, a number of safety issues with the state highway network in this location have been raised by the community.

Our priority is to make this road safer so that everyone using it can get where they are going safely and reliably.

Permanent speed limits

The following speed limit was proposed during consultation and has been set as the new permanent speed limit along SH5 through Waiotapu:

80km/h that extends from 551m north-east of Waikite Valley Road to 369m south-west of Waiotapu Loop Road, a stretch of 977m through the settlement of Waiotapu on SH5. The 80km/h speed limit is a reduction from the current legal limit of 100km/h.

The new permanent speed limit takes effect from Monday 6 July 2020.

Investigation and evidence

The speed review process involves numerous steps that help determine the speed limit we propose at consultation. We complete a technical assessment which takes into account the road itself, the traffic volumes, the crash history, and the way people are currently travelling on the roads. We engaged with road user groups, members of the public, councils, local iwi, AA and the Police to provide further feedback and concluded the safe and appropriate speed through Waiotapu is 80km/h.

Crash history

There have been 20 crashes on this stretch of road in the last ten years (2009 - 2018). Five people were seriously injured.

A small change in speed makes a big difference, especially when cyclists or pedestrians are involved. Most crashes are caused by a number of contributing factors, but even when speed doesn’t cause the crash, it is most likely to determine whether anyone is killed, injured, or walks away unharmed.

Frequently asked questions

Find out more about the SH5 Waiotapu permanent speed limit by reading the frequently asked questions.

Frequently asked questions 

Consultation and submissions

Public consultation closed on 25 October 2019.

111 submissions were received during the consultation period from stakeholder organisations and the public.

How speed reviews work

More information about speed and the speed review process is available on the Speed Review Programme webpage.