New electronic speed limit signs will alert Motueka motorists to reduce their speed to 40km/hr as they travel near three schools on High St/SH60.
The schools are Motueka Rudolf Steiner School, Motueka South School, and St Peter Chanel School.
The signs are programmed to temporarily reduce the speed limits outside the gate during pick-up and drop-off times.
The schools have been working in partnership with the NZ Transport Agency and Tasman District Council to improve safety by making the school and its students more visible to motorists.
The school zone will begin just south of the Rudolf Steiner School, which is situated at 480 High St, and end on the south side of the intersection with Kind Edward St.
There will also be signs on the side street – Courtney St – near the intersection with the State Highway.
Motorists will be advised of the school zone and speed restriction of 40kmh between 8.25am and 9 am, before school starts and 2.55pm and 3.15pm, when children are going home.
Transport Agency investigations have shown that for many New Zealand schools the main traffic safety issue is the risk of crashes with vehicles turning into or out of the school grounds to drop-off or pick-up students.
Transport Agency Regional Performance Manager Mark Owen says “The signs will be a good visual reminder for motorists in the area to reduce their speed to 40kmh, which will make it safer for children.”
“By targeting vehicles at times when school is starting and finishing, drivers will be reminded by the electronic speed sign that children are around.”
Motueka South School’s Acting Principal Linda Beatson is welcoming the signage, and says “The school’s board, staff, students, parents and neighbours are delighted that the electronic signage we have requested is now being installed on High Street to support our school crossing.”
“Along with a reduced traffic speed limit targeted to the beginning and end-of-school-day times, these measures are sure to help keep our students safer, as they travel to and from school across the busy main highway.”
The variable speed signs will be operational from 30 June and police will be monitoring compliance of speed through the area.
The construction and ongoing costs of the signs will be met by the Transport Agency. The Transport Agency is currently consulting with the Motueka community on other safety and traffic flow improvements for High St/SH 60, including potential upgrades of intersections and pedestrian crossings. More information can be found on the SH60 Motueka Investigation project page.