Speed Rule Quickfire – what, why and how to have your say

Speed Rule Quickfire – what, why and how to have your say

Bike Auckland

Unfortunately, the text is incredibly dense, and is unhelpful to anyone who doesn’t already know a lot about transport. So, let’s quickly go over the jist: 

Transport Minister Simeon Brown’s proposed new “Land Transport Rule: Setting of Speed Limits Rule 2024”, often called the Draft Speed Rule, wants to do the following things, which will make streets more dangerous, increase congestion, and increase emissions.

  • Increase the speed limits for most types of roads,
  • Forbid local road authorities from lowering speeds below these new limits. Urban streets, even those with shops, houses and on-street activities, would no longer be allowed to be lower than 50km/h.
  • Some urban roads may qualify to have 40 km/h speed limits on the condition that there is a “significant” pedestrian and cyclist presence. “Significant” has not been defined or quantified.
  • Mandatorily take away all safer speed zones around schools. This means that most streets around schools will go back to 50km/h. These will be replaced with more costly Variable Speed Limits only for a tiny 150m each side of the school gate.
  • Mandatorily take away recent speed limit reductions on all urban main roads
  • The rule does not require safety impacts, evidence, and local support for the current safe speeds to be taken into account.
  • All the changes are blanket changes without taking into account the local area and how it may have changed since the safe speeds were adopted.

Speed kills. Around 55 more Aucklanders will be killed and seriously injured on the road over the next two years if the Speed Rule goes ahead. The Government is increasing speed limits under the guise of boosting the economy, despite all evidence to the contrary, and with no consultation process allowed on affected streets. It’s important they hear from all of us how harmful their proposal will be. 

The feedback form can take just 5 minutes, depending on how much you want to write. Please let the Government know that you want to keep safe speeds, and ask a friend to do the same.

Deadline: Thursday 11 July

Survey here Consultation page with more info

Recommended reading

FAQ: What is a Variable Speed Limit?

A Variable Speed Limit is where you have a general speed limit that applies most of the time, and then a lowered one at specific times of day. In school areas, this means that they could have a 30km/hr speed limit at the school start and end times, but the speed limit would return to the new mandatory minimum of 50km/hr for the rest of the day. 

As well as being much more costly to implement, this would not create the safe streets our children deserve: 85% deaths and serious injuries immediately outside of schools occur outside of pick up and drop off time (source: AT). Children are still using the streets around schools throughout the whole day; for getting to and from before and after school care, for school trips, and for extra curricular activities like choir, theatre, and sports practice.

Variable speeds are also simply too easy to forget about. Permanent speed limits are much easier to comply with, and provide greater safety for everyone using the street.

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