No support for 40kph limit

YVETTE BATTEN - NORTH TARANAKI MIDWEEK
Last updated 05:00 16/07/2014

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New Plymouth District Council has received only two comments from the public about lowering the speed limit to 40 kilometres an hour.

During May, Midweek ran an article in which New Plymouth Police Sergeant George White was pushing for slower speeds on residential streets.

In the article Mayor Andrew Judd said the council would consider it, if there was enough support within the community.

"We've received only two comments from the public on this issue; one person was in support of the proposed change and one disagreed with it.

"There is no groundswell of local support to lower the speed limit on all our roads so the council will not be considering the matter.

"However, if we receive requests from residents on specific streets, because of particular issues they are experiencing, we will investigate whether a change to the speed limit would be suitable."

The council recently extended the 50km/h section on Barrett Rd at the residents' request.

White said if people want to change they need to let the council know.

"They're not mind readers."

The whole idea of bringing this to the attention of the public was to create discussion, he said.

"If you think it's a good idea, let the council know now before we have any injury or lose any more people."

He is still getting calls from the public about his suggestion.

"I also get frequent reports ... of the discussions around the tea room at different work places.

"So far I have only heard one comment against the change ... from someone who said it would mean it would be slower for him to drive to places. All other comments have been positive."

He believes most people want the change.

"Motor Vehicles cause more injuries and deaths than anything else in a modern society. Worldwide the motor vehicle causes more deaths and injuries than recent wars.

‘This is not about big brother being in control, it is about keeping our kids and our streets safe. Is there anything more important?"

White said the suggestion was an option, used in some other countries already, which could work here.

"In some countries the pedestrian and cyclist have all the rights, vehicles come second. Hit someone and you are for the high jump.

"I cannot change the world, all I am doing is saying this is a consideration, let's talk about it now, and let those who can change things know how you feel."

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- Taranaki

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