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When will there be SH2 action?

The car Mitch Dean was driving was hit by a truck at the Ngaumutawa Rd-SH2 intersection. PHOTO/EMMA BROWN

EMMA BROWN
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A collision between a car and a truck at the Ngaumutawa Rd-State Highway 2 intersection on Friday night has sparked public outcry at the lack of progress made by the New Zealand Transport Agency in making the road between Masterton and Carterton safer.

Heading home from work on Friday evening, Mitch Dean from MB Brown Ltd was almost sandwiched between a truck and trailer, when the driver changed his mind, switching lanes.

MB Brown Ltd company manager Peter O’Hara said, “it’s a wonder there hasn’t been a fatality there” and “it was the near misses [NZTA] don’t hear of that was the big thing”.

NZTA is still working on a plan to make the section of SH2 from Masterton to Carterton safter, more than three years after the first consultation.

But they insist it has not been delayed.

NZTA said it did not have an updated response on the situation from its last response in February.

Masterton Mayor Lyn Patterson said it was “obviously a high-risk intersection from a safety point of view”.

“It’s a been priority for me for the past six and half years.

“Plans for a roundabout were drawn up nine years ago by NZTA, but we are still waiting for action.”

Dean went to turn left on to SH2 from Ngaumutawa Rd at 5pm on Friday when the truck, waiting in the right-hand turning lane decided to turn left instead.

As he was turning the corner, the truck pulled out in front of him, one of the tyres hitting the front side of his car.

He said the truck’s logging trailer swung sideways behind him, almost sandwiching him between the front and back of the truck.

Dean said the truck driver didn’t see him due to a blind spot, and he was glad he had “a good strong car”, otherwise it could have ended differently.

At the time, he didn’t think about calling the police, only pulling over to get information from the truck driver who was “gutted”.

On Monday, he filed an incident report but said in hindsight he should have called police.

O’Hara said something needed to be done, because there were too many close calls.

It’s a busy intersection with Tumu ITM on the corner.

People were choosing to turn left to avoid the traffic, then turn around further down the road, O’Hara said, adding that many described the situation as “diabolical”.

Also, some people were unaware of the give way coming in from Waingawa and turning left into Ngaumutawa Rd.

Even police staff had commented there was too much going on at the intersection.

Wairarapa Road Safety Council manager Bruce Pauling said he had voiced his frustrations and was “waiting with bated breath” for an update.

Only last Wednesday, there was a crash at the Ngaumutawa intersection.

Just before 11am, a woman driving a silver Mazda hatchback turned right out of Ngaumutawa Rd on to SH2 and crashed into another vehicle turning right out of Buchanan Pl, just 10 metres down from the main Ngaumutawa intersection.

An NZTA spokesperson said it was working on funding to make the road safer.

2 COMMENTS

  1. This case sounds much more like a driver problem than a road one, yes he should have called the police. Another bad intersection is Renall St. and Queen St. where the strangely positioned compulsory stop is frequently ignored by most drivers, including those employed to enforce the rules.

  2. Just as well it was a “good strong car” and not a cyclist. Scary there is vehicles on the road with blindspots so big to not be able to see a car.

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