When you first drive along Kapiro road the current speed limit may not seem unreasonable. However, there are a number of factors which make 100km/h dangerous including:
Businesses e.g., kitchen manufacturing, garden centre, kiwifruit pack house, grading equipment, nurseries.
Child care facilities – “Nurture by Nature” (who have raised their concerns with The Council).
Residential houses with a single driveway leading to one or more houses.
Residential roads such as; Equestrian Drive, Pukeko Lane, River Drive Road.
Feeder Roads - Purerua and Redcliffs Roads which link now increasingly populous areas.
Most intersections having limited visibility to motorists increasing the risk of collision both with those exiting and with those slowing or stopping to turn.
Kiwifruit packers have tractor and trailer equipment that pull out at slow speed into a fast moving lane to collect more kiwi fruit from adjacent orchards.
Limited signage indicating that it is a bus route.
There are no footpaths/cycle lanes or even a reasonable shoulder meaning that pedestrians and cyclists must share the road with traffic at 100km/h
There have been two recent deaths on the road; a cyclist in 2014 and a motorcyclist this year and several people were injured in a collision between an orchard spraying unit and a ute in 2015.
Vision Kerikeri recently wrote to the Council raising these concerns and proposing that the speed limit along Kapiro Road be reduced from 100 kph to 80 kph to lower the risk of further accidents. In our opinion, the 100 kph speed limit is no longer consistent with the busy nature of the road and changing demographics. It is dangerous and should be lowered without delay.
In support of the proposal we asked the FNDC to:
Undertake a traffic volume count.
Update the residential and commercial properties that are now located on the route and adjacent feeder roads as there are changes since the last assessment in 2014.
Assess the number of children that enter or leave day care nurseries or wait for school buses.
Programme a foot path and cycle path for Kapiro Road.
Install 50 kph signs on roads off Kapiro Road which lead to residential housing. Currently the speed limit along these roads is also 100 kph, which makes little sense, although it is legal.