Today is truck day. From 6am one container-carrying lorry will roll from Marsden Pt every five minutes onto State Highway 1.
It means days of additional pressure on the road from Whangārei to Auckland and has led to a caution for motorists to watch for blackspots on the route.
Road safety advocate John Williamson said there were sections of the road where inattentive motorists faced greater risks so needed greater care, especially when nearly 1200 containers had to be shifted from Northport on 1000 trucks.
The containers arrived on the Constantinos P on Sunday and have been stacked at Northport. The trucks will be shifting the containers between 6am and midnight for seven days.
Williamson, a former Whangārei District Councillor, said the truck movements would be an opportunity to show the rest of New Zealand Northland was well placed to handle the containers and the number of vehicles on the road.
"This is a trial. It's something we need to get used to over a period of time but not get panicky about. The biggest thing for the truck drivers is being able to take the rest stops they need to take and there's certainly issues where those rest stops will be, although candidly from Auckland to Whangārei that's not too bad.
"But I also have a fair bit of faith in the trucking industry that they up their game significantly."
Williamson said both sides of the Brynderwyn Hills, Wellsford by the intersection of SH1 and SH16, just south of Wellsford where the speed dropped to 80km/h and the Dome Valley area were blackspots motorists needed to watch.
"There was a fatality at the bottom northern end of the Brynderwyns this year and that was a relatively straight piece of road and a person taking their eye off the road, relaxing, and collecting a car with a boat. Blackspots are where you might ease off.
"Narrow, windy pieces everyone has got to be careful. Northern end of the Brynderwyn make sure you keep your eye on the road. Southern end because there's a particularly windy and as you head down into the Dome Valley as well, that's a congested piece of road.
"After Wellsford, be extra careful as you're heading from a 50km zone to 80km zone, which is a known blackspot and I am sure there'll be increased enforcement around that area - I hope so."
His message to all roads users between Whangārei and Auckland for the next week is: "Give yourself plenty of time, take breaks frequently, don't drink and drive, make sure you wear your seatbelt, be courteous, be kind to other drivers".
Williamson said he believed Port Marsden Highway and SH1 would be able to cope with more than 1000 trucks.
National Carriers Association chief executive David Aitken said the trucking industry didn't choose for the Constantinos P to call at Northport instead of Auckland.
"However, they are very good at problem-solving when it comes to logistics for their customers and get goods moved to where they need to be.
"The only other alternative is that individuals drive up there and pick up their Christmas present or whatever they are waiting for.
"Not one of these commercial trucks is on the road for a pleasure ride. They are there doing an actual job," he said.