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Kapiti Expressway needs a snooze button
30 July, 2017
Nick Fisher hammers home the point to NZTA

Earlier this week a group of sleep deprived Kapiti residents erected some signs on the expressway to encourage heavy vehicle drivers to drive more quietly through the residential area.
The 'please no engine braking' sign was a copy of the standard NZTA sign.
"We are becoming increasingly frustrated at the lack of communication and action by NZTA," said group spokesperson, Nick Fisher. "The noise levels are not decreasing, and all NZTA seem to be doing is monitoring. Banning engine braking by heavy vehicles (a.k.a. Jake brakes and exhaust brakes) is such an easy start, but obviously NZTA need help to do this."
NZTA expert evidence at the Board of Inquiry stated that signage was the best way to mitigate the noise from auxiliary brakes:
135 There are very limited mitigation options that can be applied to the issue of engine braking, the most obvious being the installation of "Engine Brake Restriction" signs. In my opinion, these signs would be a suitable and effective mitigation and management measure for dealing with the noise from engine braking.

The Board, in its decision, stated:
519 ….we encourage NZTA to do so wherever this is practical, although we acknowledge that as a responsible roading authority, NZTA is unlikely to require such a direction.
"Now NZTA are telling the media that they are not allowed to erect signs as it is a 100km/hr area. Why did they mislead the Board of Inquiry. Why have these signs been erected on the 100km/hr Hawkes Bay Expressway," asked Mr Fisher.
"What is really needed is a commitment from NZTA to finish the expressway, and not to pass on the costs, such as health and quality of life, to the residents. We need more and higher earth bunds, and more and higher walls.
"NZTA have stolen our precious silence. We want it back."

 
Comments
Bernie Randall (added 3 weeks ago)
Tonight (Tuesday) at the Paraparaumu/Raumati Community Board meeting representatives from NZTA will be attending to speak on noise concerns.
Pat Foley (added 3 weeks ago)
Great job Nick. The only thing consistent with NZTA is their inconsistency. Short cuts have been taken in the building to save money , damage is already being reported. What happened to do it once do it right and NZTA must honour their assurance that suburban damage will be minimal!
Dale Hinkley (added 3 weeks ago)
This is a disgraceful situation. NZTA you owe it to residents to ACT HONOURABLY NOW. AND FIX THIS.
Nicola Beechey (added 3 weeks ago)
Great work Nick and team. Surely NZTA has the power to change its own rules, especially after misleading the BOI. This is only fair to the people of the Kapiti Coast who just want a good nights sleep.
Loretta Pomare (added 3 weeks ago)
Couldn't agree more! Well done Nick and team! We need the same in Waikanae but have been told the same story ie not allowed on 100kph expressways! But they are on others as pointed out in this article! We want action in Waikanae too, especially the bund at Puriri Rd that is not even finished to the correct height! We have repeatedly requested a noise barrier, however it seems to fall on deaf ears, they stated "it won't make much difference" TO WHOM, I ask!
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