The NZ Transport Agency is urging people travelling on State Highway 1 (SH1) between Picton and Christchurch to stick to the temporary speed restrictions in place through several worksites on the route for their own safety as well as for the safety of road workers.
The North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery Alliance’s Network Operations Manager, Tresca Forrester, says it’s important for drivers need to stay safe by paying extra attention on this stretch of road.
“Several parts of the coastal highway are still having significant work carried out. Driving through a work site is not business as usual, and the lower speed limits which are in place on these sites are there to keep both workers and road users safe.
“Even at times when no workers are present, the conditions through these work sites are not suitable or safe for normal open road speeds.”
Ms Forrester says construction work is continuing along the Kaikoura coastal corridor to complete the restoration of road and rail links following the November 2016 earthquake, and make them more resilient for the future.
“The coastal corridor is very narrow which restricts the way we can move our equipment on the open road. We have a challenging work programme so this can sometimes cause delays.
“The journey between Picton and Christchurch still takes an average of 5 ½ hours on SH1, but people should allow plenty of time in case of unexpected delays.”
Drivers should continue to take care at level crossings as trains and other rail vehicles can run at any time and from either direction on the line between Picton and Christchurch as the recovery works continue.
“Trains travel faster than they appear and can’t stop quickly. Drivers should always check both ways at level crossings before proceeding, day and night,” Ms Forrester says.
To plan your journey and for updates on delays, roadworks and road closures go to www.nzta.govt.nz/p2c (external link) or call 0800 4 HIGHWAYS (0800 44 44 49). Check at least two hours before travel and when you’re on the road.