Community help sought on SH3 safety improvements


The NZ Transport Agency wants to talk to the local community about making a further two sections of State Highway 3 safer for everyone who uses the busy road.

SH3 TA to Otorohanga

It is holding three events in early July to canvas public opinion on the Hamilton to Ōhaupō and Te Awamutu to Otorohanga sections of the state highway. Feedback can also be given online on the project pages.

“We want to learn more about these sections of the highway from the people who use them,” Transport Agency Highways Manager Karen Boyt says.

“We want to talk to people who live on the road, and who use the road, and discuss their ideas. There are proven ways we can upgrade the road to prevent crashes, but to get it right, we need the community’s views because it’s locals who know local roads best.”

Between 2006 and 2015 there have been four deaths and 30 serious injuries on SH3 between Hamilton and Ōhaupō and three deaths and 23 serious injuries between Te Awamutu and Otorohanga. Most of these crashes were head-on collisions or resulted from drivers losing control and hitting trees, power poles or ditches or crashes at access ways and intersections.

Ms Boyt says people will always make mistakes, but there are things that can be done to make these stretches of road safer. Options include:

  • widening the shoulders to give drivers more room to recover if they lose control
  • installing side safety barriers to stop drivers running off the road
  • adding rumble strips to give distracted drivers a wake-up call before they cross the centreline or run off the road
  • widening the centreline to reduce head-on collisions.

Ms Boyt says the Transport Agency is also looking at how it can make it safer for people to cross the road in the Ōhaupō township.

The Transport Agency has nearly completed adding safety improvements to the section of the highway between Ōhaupō and Te Awamutu and also plans to add safety improvements to the stretch of SH3 between SH37 to Te Kuiti.

These projects are part of the Safe Roads and Roadsides programme which aims to prevent people from dying or being seriously injured on rural roads.

To learn about the treatments we use and why we use them, visit our Safe Roads webpage.

Community events

Event Location Date Time
Sausage sizzle Ōhaupō Rugby Club 1 July 10am-12pm and 2pm-4pm
Coffee drop in Te Awamutu Library 4 July 10.30am - 12.30pm
Coffee drop in Otorohanga Library 8 July 10.30am – 12.30pm

Feedback can also be provided online