The diamond shape before a pedestrian crossing is there to warn motorists that they are approaching a crossing and also for pedestrians who must not step off the kerb on to the crossing if a vehicle has passed over the diamond.

This was taught at schools and used to be the law enforced by the Ministry of Transport now called NZ Transport Authority.

Maybe the rules have changed, especially the way some pedestrians expect vehicles to stop or think that by not looking at the approaching vehicle they will not get bowled.

Chris Smith, Auckland.

A spokesperson for the Transport Agency had this to say last year:

"The white diamond markings on the road before pedestrian crossings are to warn drivers they are approaching a crossing. The markings are not intended to indicate to pedestrians when it is safe to cross.

"Since 2005, white diamonds have been optional to indicate the approach to a pedestrian crossing. However, road controlling authorities must now install pedestrian crossing warning signs and the road user rule requires a driver to give way to a pedestrian on a crossing or a pedestrian who is obviously waiting to cross at a pedestrian crossing, unless the pedestrian is under the control of a school patrol."

So I fear that the rule you learnt at school has been superseded. And it makes sense. I did a little survey the other day and found that, while standing on the footpath beside a pedestrian crossing, I could not always see the white diamond on the road. I am a woman of average height.


But, to be fair, the road code, in the section for "other road users", says that a pedestrian should not step out suddenly on to a pedestrian crossing if any vehicles are so close to the crossing that they cannot stop.

I've seen the inscription "INVOCAMVS 31:7" imbedded in stone at Hurstmere Green in Takapuna and also on the footpath on Broadway, Newmarket. I've googled the inscription thinking it may be a biblical term, but with no luck. Christine Sharman, Auckland.

I'm no Latin scholar but I think it means "We call upon", and in lower case script would be written "Invocamus". Why exactly it is in Takapuna and Newmarket is another matter - can anyone help?

And another cry for help.

Could you tell me who painted the mural on the wall surrounding the Supper Club in Beresford St, just off Pitt St. It depicts old trams in Queen St and the buses that replaced them. Milton Kayes, Auckland.

I have not been able to find out who the artist was - can anyone help?