Thursday, July 25, 2024
2.8 C


My Account

- Advertisement -

‘Improvements’ rankle motorists

In the Times-Age of January 6, there was a long list of closures of State Highway 2 and 53 courtesy of the bureaucratic pen of some faceless clerk in NZTA, or Waka Kotahi as it was known.

I don’t know what Wairarapa has done to warrant the extreme treatment from NZTA, but I, for one, am over it.

When NZTA was initially discussing its so-called improvements between Masterton and Carterton, it was pointed out by several groups that getting rid of the passing lane south of Masterton would cause major problems.

Masterton is a rural town and slow agricultural equipment often drives south. NZTA were told, at length, that the passing lane was needed.

That was totally ignored by the bureaucratic jackboot of the Wellington agency, and the passing lane went, and a median barrier was installed.

What that has meant is that any heavy agricultural machinery driving south of Masterton holds the traffic up for kilometres. Vehicles can’t pass courtesy of the median barrier, and the heavy machinery can’t move over to let other vehicles pass. There just isn’t room.

NZTA was told at length what would happen and totally ignored all the local expertise. After all, they knew what was best for us, and the locals didn’t.

The median barrier is also farcical for those living on the road having to drive away from their destination before turning round at a roundabout and heading in the direction they originally intended.

It is, in a phrase, a total bloody shambles, with respected local solicitor Michael Bott describing the organisation as ‘an opaque bureaucracy that uses consultation in a way that would make 1984 author George Orwell rub his eyes’.

I agree.

Then we have the ridiculous speed limit between Greytown and Featherston. A long, straight road with just one bend in it was decreed, against all local recommendations, to an 80 kph speed limit.

Why? There’s absolutely no road safety reason for so doing, just the whim of an out-of-control government agency in Wellington.

Michael Bott then did some additional calculations and found out that just .002 per cent of trips resulted in a crash for whatever reason. Apparently, that .002 per cent encouraged the clerks in Wellington to lower speed limits. It’s a joke.

Having driven about the country extensively over the last month, I’m aware that many roads where you couldn’t safely drive at 80 kph have 100 kph speed limits. In my opinion, that only increases the farce of the Greytown, Featherston speed limit.

The new National-led government has said it will sort NZTA out. They have my total support as the level of arrogance in that organisation is, in my view, excessive.

Then there’s the road to Hinakura, which was washed out, causing considerable problems for locals.

NZTA’s original response was that the road wasn’t worth fixing at the estimated cost of $14 million.

Hinakura is a productive local farming area, yet Wellington decides it isn’t worth a mere $14 million.

Putting that figure in perspective, the NZTA has already spent in excess of $62 million advertising its misguided ‘Road to Zero’ circus.

Mind you, over half its staff earn over $100,000, with 50 per cent of that number earning over $150,000. It’s good work if you can get it.

It needs to stop and now. The agency needs to be pulled in line so it is working for the people of Wairarapa and NZ.

Currently, it gives the sincere impression that it is inward-looking and totally out of touch.

I wish the government well in its efforts to leg-rope the totally out-of-control animal that is NZTA.

They have my support.


Comments are closed.

Related Articles

- Advertisement -
clear sky
2.8 ° C
2.8 °
2.8 °
87 %
10 %
7 °
14 °
15 °
14 °
14 °