T3 ticketers 'out of control'

JESS ETHERIDGE
Last updated 05:00 05/02/2014
Onewa Rd

CONTENTIOUS: The Onewa Rd transit lane.

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Motorists are outraged by Auckland Transport's tough stance on transit lanes.

Jeremy Burfoot says drivers changing into lanes to turn left are being penalised unfairly.

Mr Burfoot's son was ticketed after crossing into the Onewa Rd transit lane more than 50 metres before turning into a petrol station.

Drivers are allowed to enter transit lanes 50m before exiting.

Mr Burfoot says cutting across closer would have been dangerous.

"He got a transit lane ticket for this. We sent in photographs and an explanation.

"We never received a reply. Instead we got a collection letter from Baycorp."

"These Auckland Transport people are out of control," Mr Burfoot says.

Mr Burfoot is one of a group of motorists who contacted the North Shore Times after its story about T3 lanes earlier this month.

Joy Klaas says she is "awaiting a court date" to contest a $150 transit lane fine for driving in one of Constellation Drive's transit lanes for more than 50 metres.

"How was I supposed to know that you need to calculate 50m whilst concentrating on traffic and making the correct turns?"

There are no road markings to indicate the 50m mark, she says.

Susie Fieldhouse says she was fined $180 for using a T2 lane on Constellation Dr.

She says she wanted to turn left into Ascension Pl.

"This piece of road leads to one of the places I visit often for work so I am aware of the rules," she says.

"On reading the infringement notice, if I wanted to contest the issue the fine had to be paid first and then the court would decide."

Auckland Transport "aims to be fair and give drivers the benefit of the doubt", spokesman Mark Hannan says.

"The law is quite clear . . . drivers must adhere to the road rules which are set by Parliament and apply across the country."

An "impartial review" of tickets can be requested through Auckland Transport's infringement review department.

Changing into a transit lane is covered by the Land Transport (Road User) Rule 2004, Mr Hannan says.

"The rule states that you can use the lane for the purposes of completing a safe turning manoeuvre for a distance of 50m.

"Auckland Transport shows some leniency and will issue an infringement notice only after 70m."

Go to tinyurl.com/RoadUserRule2004 to read the full Land Transport (Road User) Rule 2004 legislation.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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