A project to improve safety for road users on a stretch of rural State Highway 34 west of Te Teko to Kawerau will get underway at the end of this month.
The project will involve installing rumble strips on parts of the 100 km/h area, extending the existing safety barriers where there are steep banks, upgrading the barrier beneath the overbridge, upgrading some signage and removing trees.
The $540,000 project is scheduled to begin now and is expected to be complete by the end of March. The work is dependent on fine weather.
The NZ Transport Agency’s Bay of Plenty State Highways Manager Niclas Johansson says the work will reduce the risk of crashes, make the stretch of road safer for people who travel on it and will provide a more forgiving environment for motorists who make mistakes when they are driving.
“Two people died and 15 were seriously injured on this section of SH34, between 2005 and 2014. Most of the deaths and serious injuries on this road are caused by motorists running off the road and hitting trees, poles or deep ditches. These safety measures will improve the road to prevent crashes like these, and to make sure if a crash happens, people are less likely to be killed or seriously injured,” he says.
The work is part of Safer Journeys, the government’s strategy to improve the safety of our roads.
A $600 million programme is underway to make many rural routes on the State Highway network safer in the next six years. It aims to prevent 900 deaths and serious injuries through relatively simple measures such as rumble strips, shoulder widening, safety barriers, better signage and changes to speed limits.