In 2020, 526 people were either killed or seriously injured on our roads. These deaths include a growing number of people who were not in vehicles – particularly pedestrians.
As part of its road safety improvement programme, the Auckland Transport Board has just unanimously-endorsed the Road Safety Business Improvement Review 2021 (BIR) and is committed to improving road safety outcomes in Tāmaki Makaurau.
“AT, along with the Tāmaki Makaurau Transport Safety Governance Group* (TMTSGG), is now committed to working more closely and we have endorsed the 2021 review – to make Auckland’s transport system safer for all,” says Auckland Transport’s Chief Executive Shane Ellison.
Earlier this year, AT asked the author of the review - international road safety expert Eric Howard - to report on AT’s progress against the 45 recommendations in his 2018 review.
The report shows that out of 75 actions related to AT responsibilities, 28 have been substantially or completely implemented, 28 have achieved satisfactory progress and action continues, 18 are underway with unsatisfactory progress and one has not yet progressed from 2018.
Some of AT’s road safety achievements since 2018 include:
- In September 2019, a Vision Zero Strategy and Action Plan for Tāmaki Makaurau was adopted, overseen by the Tāmaki Makaurau Road Safety Governance Group. This was a commitment made to deliver a safe transport network free from death and serious injury by 2050.
- Between June 2020 and June 2021, safe speed limits were rolled out on more than 600 Auckland roads; and speeds in the city centre were lowered - including a substantial adoption of 30 km/hr limits.
- Soon the second stage of safe speed changes will be consulted on with Aucklanders - comprising an additional 1,022 km of Auckland’s roads.
“AT has achieved highly-positive results to date for its community and this achievement cannot be underappreciated,” says Eric Howard.
NZ Police will continue to work closely with Auckland Transport on its road safety work.
Assistant Commissioner for Road Policing and Deployment, Bruce O’Brien, says “as a committed Road to Zero partner, staff are out on our roads every day targeting and preventing unsafe behaviour - to reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries on our roads.
“NZ Police is working closely with AT and the Tāmaki Makaurau safety partners to ensure our resources can be better aligned to achieve road safety outcomes for Auckland.”
Shane Ellison says the focus for AT and its road safety partners, over the next six months, will be on the top ten priority recommendations that will have the greatest impact in reducing deaths and serious injuries on the road network.
Top 10 Recommendations – BIR 2021:
The highest priority individual recommendations in terms of importance and urgency, within the 31 identified, in order, are to:
- Substantially improve deterrence of drink driving
- Substantially improve deterrence of speeding
- Pursue significant road safety regulatory reform at a national level
- Deliver improved pedestrian (and other people outside vehicles) safety across the arterials and other roads in the network
- Advocate for and advise on policy reform at a national level
- Lower travel speeds across higher-risk sections of the Auckland network
- Expand safer urban infrastructure treatment programmes, in association with safer speed limit introductions, to continue to lower death and serious injury (DSI) across the road network
- AT to substantially ramp up investment in/resourcing of capabilities for informed road safety partnership activities with local Auckland partners, plus other stakeholders and national partners
- With AT Board and chief executive leadership, AT to continue to work to genuinely embed the Vision Zero and Safe System principles in all they do to achieve a 65 per cent reduction in DSI by 2030 and zero DSI by 2050 for their community
- Ensure health and safety responsibilities cover transport network operating risks.