Country roads aren’t motorways

Rural Canterbury areas are campaigning to get motorists to slow down on country roads:

Selwyn District Council says the “country roads are not motorways” campaign has come about after 187 crashes in the district from 2009 to 2013, in which speed or driving too fast for the conditions were a contributing factor.

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Photo: IS 100k OK CAMPAIGN

Eight people died in those crashes and 33 received serious injuries.

Of all the speed related crashes during that period, 86 percent were on the open road.

The speed limit is a maximum not a target and drivers have a responsibility to drive to the conditions.

Narrower, windier roads which may or may not be sealed require a lot more care than many motorists, accustomed to little more taxing that Sate Highway 1, give them and 100 kph is often not OK on them.

But it’s not only visitors who speed. Locals and frequent users including stock can get a bit complacent and go faster than they should too.

That said, I’ve seen some very careful and considerate behaviour from Fonterra tanker drivers.

One summer evening I was at the top of a hill when I spotted a tanker on a farm track heading for the road a few hundred metres ahead.

I crept down the hill, round the blind corner, up the other side and found the tanker waiting patiently in the gateway for me to pass.

One Response to Country roads aren’t motorways

  1. Paranormal says:

    “Of all the speed related crashes during that period, 86 percent were on the open road.”

    This is typical of the enforcement mentality. Of those 86% of accidents that were ‘speed related’, how many of them occurred because the driver was over the speed limit? Studies where researchers have gone back and undertaken a detailed review of ‘speed related’ accidents found a significant percentage were when the driver was traveling under the posted limit.

    If we want to get serious about stopping deaths on our roads, we need to train people better how to drive and handle their cars in all conditions. Until we do that there will continue to be a correlation between weather conditions and fatalities.

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