Dean welcomes road improvement plan
The fast tracking of planned road safety changes designed to improve overseas visitors driving experiences has been welcomed by Jacqui Dean, MP for Waitaki.
Mrs Dean said the measures announced by Associate Transport Minister Craig Foss at Queenstown today (Mar 5) would go a long way to enhance all road user's experiences.
The improvements, to be completed by July 1, include an additional 50km of centre-line rumble strips, 140 km extra no-passing centre-line markings and an additional 200 km of keep left arrows painted on the road.
Other ongoing strategies include extending the Visiting Drive Signature Project, driver education, clearing issues around accurate travel times and cell reception in key tourist spots.
Hire and tourism vehicle industries have also implemented a number of changes to their systems.
Recently the MP had called for a speedier introduction of road safety measures following a spate of fatal and near fatal accidents involving tourists from a mix of countries.
"I'm pleased the Ministry of Transport has recognised improvements are needed and has responded both swiftly and positively to the calls ,"she said.
"These improvements also include suggestions made by the folk in my electorate and I'm sure they'll prove useful to all drivers regardless of where they come from,"Mrs Dean said.
Earlier yesterday Mr Foss said the Government had recognised the concerns of many over poor driving behaviour on challenging roads in and around popular tourist destinations, particularly in the lower South Island. "Ëvery death or serious injury on our roads is a tragedy and these tragedies can be prevented by improving safety in every part of the transport system (be it) vehicles, speed, road users and the road themselves,"Mrs Foss said.
Mrs Dean also called for people to stop taking vigilante-type action and if anyone witnessed poor driving to maintain their distance and call police on*555 immediately.