Press Release – Selwyn District Council
New 40km signs are now installed around nine rural Selwyn schools and the Council is ready to survey drivers once again to ascertain how the trial is working. The sign installation over the past few months followed six years of planning and consultation …26 October 2011
New survey for 40km school zone trials
New 40km signs are now installed around nine rural Selwyn schools and the Council is ready to survey drivers once again to ascertain how the trial is working.
The sign installation over the past few months followed six years of planning and consultation with residents, schools, the New Zealand Transport Authority and other interested parties, to come up with options for making our roads and our school children safer.
A survey before the signs went up suggested most people would slow down if they saw a 40km sign near a rural school.
A second survey will take place over the next few weeks, Schools Travelwise Coordinator Ngaire Tinning says.
“Now the signs are up, we want to check if they’re effective, if people are responding and understand the instructions on the sign,” Mrs Tinning says.
The signs declare the area to be a School Zone and indicate that drivers should slow to 40km an hour if there are children present.
“It’s obvious that during school start and end times, there are going to be children around. The signs are a warning that children will be around those areas – Broadfields, Burnham, Greendale, Greenpark, Hororata, Ladbrooks, Weedons, Windwhistle and Glentunnel – all Selwyn rural schools on roads with a usual speed limit above 60km.”
The penalty for drivers who don’t slow down when children are present within the rural school zone is a careless driving infringement notice and a fine of up to $3,000.
Police and Mrs Tinning have been visiting the rural school sites recently and talking to drivers.
The new survey will be available at Selwyn District Council library/service centres, at www.selwyn.govt.nz and will be sent out through schools. Mrs Tinning encourages people to send their completed surveys back to the Council by December 2. All survey participants will go in the draw for a $100 petrol voucher prize.
The advisory rural school zone trial continues through to December 2012, so it’s likely there will be further surveys before it is completed, she says.
Selwyn District Council Asset Engineer Transportation Mark Chamberlain has been monitoring traffic speeds in rural school zone areas on a regular basis to measure the effectiveness of the signage. That will continue until the trial has been completed.