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Ask Phoebe: Drivers tricked by exit aimed at trucks

By Phoebe Falconer

File photo / Julia Thorne
File photo / Julia Thorne

On the way north from Albany to Waiwera or Wenderholm, the signs before the Silverdale/Orewa/Whangaparaoa turnoff indicate that this is the last exit before the toll road. It takes you on a slow and unnecessary trip through Silverdale and Orewa village. There is a later exit that takes you via the back of Orewa and returns to the main road just before the Orewa hill. Is there a good reason for this untruthful signage or did the business community in Orewa have some influence?
Pam Henderson, Auckland.

What a suspicious mind you have. The free route north is signposted at Silverdale because, by agreement with the former Rodney District Council, overweight and oversized vehicles have to take this route through Orewa and Waiwera before rejoining SH1 near Puhoi. These vehicles are not allowed to use the toll road nor are they allowed down Grand Drive, the final exit to Orewa before the toll road. Wouldn't it make sense for the Transport Agency to indicate this, so that ordinary motorists would know there is another exit for them, at 394, which they are entitled to use? I have suggested this before.

Can someone tell me why there is a 70km/h limit along the Newmarket Viaduct area and almost through to the Harbour Bridge? I assumed it was because there were extensive roadworks underway along this route which I travel along at least once a week. Perhaps I am wrong about this as I seem to be impeding other motorists when I adhere to this speed limit; some road users toot and point fingers at me as they zoom past, obviously doing well in excess of the 70km/h limit. They cannot fail to see the signs - there are even warning signs that one is approaching the reduced limit. I am yet to see anyone pulled to the side of the road by the police, although the room for this to happen is limited. Perhaps they are all being snapped by the speed camera reportedly working in the vicinity - who knows?
Margaret Wyatt, Flatbush.

The Transport Agency advises that the speed limit has been cut to 70km/h where the motorway passes through the construction sites at the Newmarket Viaduct and at Victoria Park because lanes are narrower and to ensure the safety of workers involved. However, the speed limit between the two projects - from just north of the Newmarket Viaduct to a point just south of the Wellington St on-ramp at Victoria Park - is 80km/h. Roadside signage and the electronic signs on the gantries over the motorway keep drivers informed about the limits. Speed cameras are but one option available to ensure drivers observe the limit on what is probably the busiest section of highway in New Zealand.

- NZ Herald

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