Earlier this week Stuff highlighted a coroner’s report that is damning of Auckland Transport’s slack response in fixing an intersection that caused the death of a man.
Four years on from an elderly man being run down in his wheelchair, Auckland Transport is yet to make any changes to the crossing a coroner labelled as the primary factor in the crash.
William Wiki Teoi was hit by a car while crossing East Tamaki Rd in Ōtara and died later at Middlemore Hospital from heart failure in March 2018.
The 84-year-old had been trying to cross the busy four-lane road because a nearby pedestrian crossing was not accessible in his wheelchair.
At the time, Auckland Transport said the road was not the primary contributing factor, but said it would upgrade the crossing and renew road markings.
So far neither of those things has been done.
In a recently released finding, Coroner Alexander Ho emphatically refuted AT’s stance, calling Wiki Teoi’s death “preventable”.
“I do not accept AT’s conclusion that the road was not the primary contributing factor to the crash,” Coroner Ho said. “It was.”
He said the only reason why Wiki Teoi was navigating through uncontrolled traffic was because AT did not provide a safe signalled crossing for mobility users to cross a busy arterial road.
The police serious crash unit also pointed to the lack of accessibility at the crossing as a contributing factor, alongside the fact Wiki Teoi crossed between cars stopped at the lights.
The intersection in question is East Tamaki Rd and Preston Rd.
The coroners report says Mr Wiki Teoi had travelled north along Preston Rd and was trying to get to the northern side of East Tamaki Rd
The traffic signals also allow pedestrians to cross East Tamaki Road. However, because of the slip lane, the signalled crossing does not provide an uninterrupted path between the south and north sides of East Tamaki Road. Pedestrians coming from the north side of the road cross to a traffic island on the south side. From that island they can then either cross the uncontrolled slip lane to reach the south side of East Tamaki Road/west side of Preston Road; or cross Preston Road via a signalled crossing to another traffic island from which they can cross an uncontrolled slip lane to the east side of Preston Road.
Because Mr Wiki Teoi’s mobility chair did not permit him to cross the non-accessible uncontrolled slip lane to get to the traffic island and the signalled crossing, he instead travelled a short distance west, down the south side of East Tamaki Road where there was a driveway allowing access on to the road. His intention appeared to be to cross the two lanes on the south side of the road, pass through a turning bay and then cross the three lanes on the north side of East Tamaki Road where he could remount the footpath by using carpark entry access.
When Mr Wiki Teoi reached the turning bay, both lanes two and three on the north side had stationary cars. He started moving through the stationary traffic towards lane one that was free flowing at the time. As he exited lane two he came into the path of an on-coming vehicle which collided with the front of his wheelchair.
The issue with the intersection for mobility users is quite clear from the streetview image below, with no mobility access from the footpath across the (uncontrolled) slip lane to the traffic island. You can also see from the image above that the footpath doesn’t even extend all the way around the intersection.
It is tragic, awful, and unfortunately all too common, for people in wheelchairs to face these sorts of choices and risks in our city. The safety review highlighted the problems with our deficient infrastructure, and AT was tasked with resolving the situation.
As noted above, AT have still not fixed this intersection and they blame COVID for not being able to consult on changes they proposed to make. Those changes they say will take place later this year or early next year. That suggests it will be about 5 years from Mr Wiki Teoi’s death to fix this intersection. That is outrageous and highlights serious cultural issues inside the organisation. They should have at least put a short-term fix in within days.
Instead, AT consulted on plans to improve this intersection in the middle of last year and it appears that what is taking so long is that AT have also tacked on a road widening project, making the project bigger and therefore harder to fund. The widening includes changing the existing slip lane from Preston to Ormiston Rd to having two lanes and adding an extra eastbound general traffic lane. One positive though is they will be adding an cycleway along some parts of Preston and Ormiston roads
Of course this report comes days after the tragic death of Levi James at Royal Oak in a location where advocates have for years been asking for changes to make it safer and which Auckland Transport ignored. Even now, nearly two weeks on AT have not made any changes to the street to make it safer, such as by removing on-street carparking. And it’s not that they can’t.
Back in November 2010, Jane Bishop tragically lost her life cycling home along Tamaki Dr – at the bend by Kelly Tarlton’s. Like in the case of Levi she was ‘doored’ as she passed a pinch point that had been raised as a safety concern years earlier by advocates. In response to her death, Auckland Transport removed some carparks from the spot 10 days later.
It feels like these days AT’s strategy has taken a leaf out from the gun lobby in the US after each mass shooting – express sympathy but deflect any discussion of blame or action long enough until the news cycle moves on to the next issue.
With that in mind think it’s useful to start highlighting cases like Wiki Teoi’s and Levi James’ where clearly deficient infrastructure has resulted in a death or serious injury and where Auckland Transport have yet to implement a fix. We plan to include a section tracking these and how many days it’s been since the incident happened in our Weekly Roundup post each Friday.
The question for readers I have is what other examples should we include.
The death at the bottom of Parnell Rise a few years ago could have been prevented by a few simple fixes.
Nothing has happened.
(Extensively written about at the time).
Once upon a time we had activist politicians who would champion this stuff, but they’re now all too worried about placating their voter base. Maybe it’s time for some home grown activist Judges, The Coronial Court could be a good place to start.
I seem to remember that the cyclist was not in control of the bike because excessive speed down Parnell Rise made it impossible to make the turn into Grafton Rd
Sadly, weak brakes or brake failure meant that going down Parnell Rise increased his speed, however he managed to turn into Stanley street, but unfortunately against a red light, and a truck coming from Port through the green collided with him.
We urgently need cycle improvements to Stanley Street and the intersection with The Strand, Beach Rd and Parnell Rise.
We also need to find ways to ensure that people who have bikes know where to find help in ensuring their bikes can be maintained.
The second death in that area happened last year – pre-August lockdown – when Michael Sheffield was cycling north along Stanley Street, from the Alten Rd intersection, and a truck simply ran over him.
Stanley St/The Strand is SH16 so owned by WK who are not at all interested in looking after the safety of the many residents who live in the area.
Thanks for the info. R: “a truck ran over him” – a truck driver ran over, or a person driving a truck ran over him. Not saying this to apportion blame to driver, no idea if they were at fault but more to highlight that people are at the heart of our transport system. People make mistakes and also people who drive trucks who run over people also have to live with the tragedy too.
Tamaki Drive is a dedicated separate cycle path for about 2km, the rest of it is a shared path. Is it appropriate to use this if you ride a bike at 40kph, or is the road more appropriate? I’ve checked my average speed on this route is 37kph (not ebike).
It is a sad day when the courts become the default safety standard for an organization that has Vision Zero in its mission statements. But what else can be done,when safety for all users is sacrificed on the traffic flow altar. We owe it to all,who have been lost or injured in this flawed approach,to keep,pushing back. Surely now,the message must be sinking in,”Enough is enough”.
We need to have a crime of Corporate Manslaughter on the books.
It would probably do a lot to have corporate minds concentrating on real elf and safety rather than the lip service they apply at the moment.
I find that elfs really only come into focus each year around December and are forgotten about by January. Its a disgrace.
One of our problems is ACC and losing the right to sue.
In Aussie councils are so scared they are going to get sued, eg all footpath joints are ground down where they have moved.
This is also why our industrial safety record is so poor.
The man that lost his life crossing the intersection of Ponsonby Road and Hopetoun Street a couple of years back.
Incidentally, I emailed AT about that intersection the year previously, highlighting it as an obvious safety risk. My concerns were brushed aside.
Thanks, Tom. It might be a good time to follow up, if you would. And I’d send a copy of your correspondence to the local councillor, too.
The question i have is have AT taken all reasonably practicable steps to protect the public? looking at that Streetview image the answer seems to be definitely not, before the accident and since.
On top of all these specific situations where they refuse to to anything, AT are also refusing to allow safer speeds to even be discussed on the biggest, busiest and most dangerous roads in the city, the arterials.
Cars and trucks running at 50kph (+) right outside homes, is simply not compatible with vision zero.
They are terrible. If slip lanes must exist, they should be required to have a raised pedestrian platform and a pedestrian crossing (zebra).
This is the perfect thing to be included in the standard design manual.
Simple rule of no slip roads without raised, coloured and lit up pedestrian and/or cycle crossing. If it adds to the cost then great, as should be a disincentive to creating more slip roads which only serve to help traffic ‘slow’ move faster in urban areas.
This one intersection should not be changed in isolation. It is pretty stupid thinking to not apply lessons learnt at one location to others.
Even on the North Western cycleway – one of the best bits of cycle infrastructure going, you have to cross over motorway off-ramps. They have been built up in recent times, but always an area that I take care to eyeball traffic as people coming off a 100km/h motorway hit these offramps at speed.
I am sure we could all send photos of a ‘favorite’ dangerous slip roads, but one I saw an accident at recently was this one:
People coming off the off-ramp are looking right at traffic coming at speed across the intersection and up the hill. But people on foot & scooters can appear at random from the left and try and cross.
Regarding those motorway off ramps on NW it is going to be vital that the NW Bus improvements plan putting in bus stops at these locations ( Lincoln Rd, Te Atatu) consider those on bike and foot navigating through the new stops.
Honestly, I wish Auckland Transport wasn’t claiming that it is doing anything “Vision Zero”. It used to be a phrase that had a meaning, and with it a set of practices and design principles, and now it is not.
I drove through here last weekend for the first time and that was bad enough. Can’t imagine trying to cross here on foot, let alone a wheelchair. Absolute madness.
Each of these cases where a person dies or is badly injured is a terrible thing. But in the face of limited budgets is the best response a knee jerk project to immediately change the one thing considered most directly responsible for that crash. Is it not perhaps better to take a more holistic approach and try to correct all of the deficiencies in the area at the same time. If an area like this set of intersections has remained largely untouched for decades is it not likely that there will be other problems with it that statistically are just as likely to cause the next serious crash as the one that just resulted in someone being hurt. Is the most likely next accident at this intersection going to be another wheel chair user being forced to make a dangerous approach to the traffic island. Or is the next most likely crash going to be something else – a thing that wont be avoided by the knee jerk change.
Presumably this intersection has existed in this state for many years without a crash like this happening and since then four more years have passed without a similar crash. I would say it could well be many more years before a similar crash occurred.
No, actually to be the devils advocate here I think it is unlikely that a “similar” crash would ever happen here again because the choices made by this victim are unfathomable and you can see why AT might have argued that the road was not the primary cause of this crash.
The coroner states “Mr Wiki Teoi’s mobility chair did not permit him to cross the non-accessible uncontrolled slip lane to get to the traffic island and the signalled crossing, he instead travelled a short distance west, down the south side of East Tamaki Road where there was a driveway allowing access on to the road.”
I can’t see how the coroner reaches the view that the wheel chair could not cross less than a meter of grass from the Preston Road footpath to reach the edge of the roadway which is flush with the berm – there is no pram crossing here because instead there seems to be several meters where is no kerb at all and a wheel chair should be able to roll straight onto the roadway and cross to the island. Clearly this is poorly laid out and would benefit form a pedestrian cross on a speed table but it just can’t in fairness be called inaccessible to a wheelchair when compared to what Mr Teoi did instead. According to the cororner rather than crossing a short width of grass berm Mr Teoi continued on the footpath until it ended then he drove his wheel chair along several meters of the grass berm and somehow got round the large illegal sign blocking the berm from the driveway which he then used as his point of entry onto the roadway. If getting to a point to cross the slip lane was inaccessible how on earth did he manage to get to that driveway.
I really can’t see any other wheel chair user or even able bodied person choosing to take that route in order to try to cross the without the benefit of the signalised crossing.
A vision zero approach is meant to accept that people make mistakes and the road should be designed to make sure those mistakes don’t lead to deaths. But the mistakes here would have been hard to foresee by anyone. It looks like the proposed changes at these intersections will help to avoid a lot of future mistakes and so we should encourage AT to get on with them as fast as practical but can we be sure that they would have prevented this crash given the decisions that must have been made to get to that point.
Imagine being an able bodied person who has not used a wheelchair looking at a picture from Google Streetview and telling a dead wheelchair user that they did not correctly assess the cross country abilities of their wheelchair….
The good thing is that we don’t have to worry about blowing the budget on this ‘knee jerk’ reaction of making sure that people in Wheelchairs can use the only formal crossing point for several kilometres. We could literally fix this issue at every single slip lane in Auckland for less than the cost of completely rebuilding this intersection.
“Four years on …”
Dear Sadly…., you (and AT) are falling into the trap of Best being preferable to Better. As Sailor Boy points out below when lives are at stake this is NEVER acceptable in the Commercial World and shouldn’t be in AT’s world either.
If an old asbestos cement water main bursts then you can bet there will be a Watercare contractor out there within hours replacing it with a plastic pipe. If an old paper-insulated lead-covered high voltage cable fails then you can bet there will be a Vector contractor out there within hours splicing in a new length of plastic insulated cable. These repairs are ‘knee jerk’ reactions yet they’re standard operating procedure in the asset management of large networks. The old no-longer-fit-for-purpose stuff gets upgraded to current best practice.
Fixing this crossing would take a similar amount of time, effort and cost as repairing a broken water main or high voltage cable. The only reason why it isn’t done is that the organisation responsible has decided that pedestrian safety isn’t important to them.
Yes it seems crazy that in a work situation – Worksafe would be out there fining a company and directors for not taking steps to minimise hazards (which have been clearly identified and raised), whereas a council controlled organisation can just get away with doing nothing, and no one is held liable.
I’ve seen this juxtaposition being mocked before.
Contrast the protection for road workers (barriers, this truck with the lit up arrow and crumple zone thing, etc) with the protection for cyclists (none).
In Auckland there was a case where a bike lane exists, but we can’t have someone sweep it because it is too dangerous.
Fixing this crossing SHOULD take a similar amount of time and cost as the other repairs. But AT appear to be run by bureaucrats who want to line the pockets of consultants. Their approach is totally flawed. They need a standard model so each item of work doesn’t need this level of effort.
No, this is foreseeable, and you would have a team of AT safety specialists telling you so if that same layout was proposed by a private developer/ organisation. AT are very good at telling other people what to do, but crap at doing it themselves. It’s absolutely a financial issue, but they don’t have the gumption to say, this is unsafe, this us what we want to do, give us another revenue stream Council/Govt to do what we need to. And as much as I hate reactive safety works (we shouldn’t fix things after people die), in this case, they should have had a rapid response team on it and fixed it within a month (no consultation at all). Do the other stuff later if you want to.
“But in the face of limited budgets” AT should not waste money doing a road widening project like this – or any of hundreds of others like it. They need to fix it first.
“it just can’t in fairness be called inaccessible to a wheelchair”
Do you need help? This is not a normal or healthy comment.
Sad etc, you say “According to the cororner rather than crossing a short width of grass berm Mr Teoi continued on the footpath until it ended then he drove his wheel chair along several meters of the grass berm and somehow got round the large illegal sign blocking the berm from the driveway”, but the report actually says simply “he instead travelled a short distance west, down the south side of East Tamaki Road”. I suspect that he did this by going through the private yard behind the parked vehicles to get to the driveway, sensibly avoiding grass (often risky for wheelchairs, despite what you seem to think) and signage – a perfectly reasonable thing to do, and far from “unfathomable”. What is unfathomable is why you ascribe non-existent words to the coroner and difficult, if not impossible, actions to a victim who appears to have been taking a reasonable approach to getting across a poorly designed road.
There is so much wrong with this comment I don’t even know where to start. “The mistakes here would be hard to foresee by anyone” “ I think it is unlikely that a “similar” crash would ever happen here again because the choices made by this victim are unfathomable and you can see why AT might have argued that the road was not the primary cause of this crash” You are 100% wrong. Another case of victim blaming. The network deficiencies are obvious to anyone who has any sort of experience in non-traffic safety audits. They are obvious to anyone who uses a wheelchair or has experience listening to wheelchair users, or parents who push a buggy, or who walk with small children. The problem is that these people’s voices are not factored into most decisions and when they are their needs are often sacrificed at the alter of traffic efficiency. I am actually embarrassed for you, that you talk about Vision Zero when you appear to have so little understanding of it.
Imagine if, at Rainbows End, someone was killed at an uncontrolled crossing of a rollercoaster. Rainbows End would be forced to close, or at least stop the roller coaster, until a safe and controlled crossing could be implemented. All roller coaster crossings would be checked for similar issues and someone would be in court over it.
Why isn’t AT the same?
Why do we not close these slip lanes immediately and only reopen them once the crossing is safe?
Why are AT not forced to audit all slip lanes to ensure that accessible kerbs are present?
A contractor could go and lay a tarmac footpath and kerb ramp this afternoon if someone at AT instructed them to. Why has is taken 4 years and counting?
AT is dysfunctional. That’s why AT is slow.
You asked for other examples of dangerous crossing points. Queenstown Road (West) in Hillsborough has three – the recently-installed NZTA-funded raised table crossing right next to the motorway offramp, a pedestrian refuge further up Queenstown Road and the unmarked pedestrian crossing point on Queenstown Road outside the dairy. All are death traps.
… and the raised table crossing is on the SW cycleway. Not that many people use this section due to the 15% gradient up Hendry Rd and the unfriendly crossings of Queenstown and Hillsborough Rds.
… and no one uses it so there is “no demand” so no need to fix it!
I still refuse to cross here and brave the traffic on Carlton St and use the roundabout.
And the other reason I do this is this is being run off the road by a vehicle who didn’t like me coming the other way… (he was sent a warning letter)
In the past when I have tried to get AT to fix or improve pedestrian and bike infrastructure you always end up with the chicken and egg answer. AT say no need to improve/ provide infrastructure as the number of users are too low. They won’t accept the argument that numbers are low due to there being no infrastructure.
The old judging how much demand for a bridge there is by counting how many people swim across the crocodile invested river.
Worth noting the cycleway through that intersection will be of particular value when pop up protection is added to Ormiston Road as part of the 60km programme. It really should include a uni directional protected cycle lane westbound though so those on bikes can avoid as many crossings when heading to Otara.
The road widening is stupid though. #whatclimatecrisis
Well you would be crazy to lower fuel tax and then not provide the appropriate infrastructure to use that cheap fuel on.
Multiple accidents on Fowlds avenue in Sandringham, including one with a school kid, but as yet zero action from Auckland Council. It’s a matter of time before something happens again.
Safety project that gets told to improve vehicle capacity – ‘sure thing’
Safety project that gets told to improve cycling – ‘nope, out of scope’
Yes that one is unbelievable especially given the context. I went back there in January because I almost couldn’t believe it was still like that.
The should close Cook St off ramp, also the onramp to go south at Symonds St while they are at it. Simplifying the motorway on/off ramps will improve it’s performance and safety anyway.
Actually what is the traffic count for this off-ramp I wonder… looks very convenient yet I don’t see many take it when I’m travelling south.
The roundabout at Ellerslie Panmure Highway and Great South Road has to be the worst. On one side of the road the footpath just disappears and you have to cross the very busy road by yourself with people still doing motorway speeds and/or not looking after exiting the roundabout. Or you go back miles and cross to the other side at some lights.
We used to have to brave this to go from work to Subway at the Caltex, not sure what you would do if you weren’t capable of a mad dash across.
You’re in fact not allowed to walk or cycle there. There’s road signs.
That fact by itself is kind of insane.
Oh yes I remember now, those are just ignored.
A big business park with thousands of employees and no way to cross the road, that is so Auckland…
Ooh there is one of those at St Lukes Mall too! https://www.google.co.nz/maps/@-36.8837129,174.7327619,3a,75y,216.81h,83.84t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sA6tcIilt9mFQCfBXHQiCbw!2e0!7i16384!8i8192
“Caution Pedestrian Accident Area”
Yep, those pedestrians are always running into each other.
That sign is directly opposite what presents as the main pedestrian entrance to the mall. I sat and ate there on Sunday and looked at those signs.
Yes this is really bad. The alternative to crossing the road where you’re not allowed is either a more dangerous run across GSR opposite the Caltex, or… a 1.8 km walk.
Or, just for fun, you could try riding a bicycle south along GSR past that roundabout.
Just writing this here pre-emptively to memorialise.
Waiau Pa school has a new raised pedestrian crossing – going to a rural block
Any kids using the new crossing will then go from the rural block to their homes across McKenzie road – to the urban block.
All attempts by our community to say – crossing McKenzie rd is the problem has met with “Proposal Outcome – After reviewing all of the feedback we received, this project will proceed without changes to the next stage of detailed planning.” language.
I hope no kid gets hurt crossing the very busy crossing-less McKenzie road.
I understand the coroners frustration – and the waste of time AT communication
Consultation should not be a delaying or money saving tactic.
Mr Mayor this is on you.
Coroners – Our parliament have ensured your court carries no weight.
MP’s – this is on you.
The National Road Carriers make submissions on raised crossings as being difficult to negotiate,they objected to them on Great North Rd, Grey Lynn. This is disingenuous ,a raised crossing is no more difficult in a heavy vehicle than it is in a car . They (NRC) are just promoting the fallacy,that if it does not promote traffic flow,it shouldn’t be there.
There is a shared path on the southern side of East Tamaki road that peters out at the shops very closed to where the accident happened. I suppose the logic is you ride your bike carefully through the shops and across the crossing which is being put across what is now the slip lane then over Preston road at the junction with East Tamaki road then onto the bi directional bike lane on Preston road then onto Ormiston road. Your natural instinct would be to just go around the corner on the foothpath and then cross Preston road near the junction of Ormiston road. There is a crossing there now is that being removed looking at the plan.
The intersection is a death trap. That left turn is too narrow to accommodate a large truck so they track up over where the kerb should be. Rather than fix it by widening (and not marking a narrow separate left lane in advance) they have poured some concrete as an apron for large trailers to run up on. The photo shows it all broken from use. I tried tracking a large articulated truck on the aerial photo and I can’t make it work even at a slow speed. A kid could be standing on that inside edge waiting to cross and end up under a truck trailer. The answer is use the space they have to provide a wider signalised left lane with a decent kerb and barrier on the inside with the lane using part of what is currently an island.
Miffy, yet again I completely agree with you.
I’ve had a look at the radii inside that intersection and it looks like pretty much any road legal vehicle could turn from lane 2 to lane 2. AT could go out and close the left turn lane tomorrow and prevent the over running. This would allow them to build an accessible crossing. Closing the left turn land would also help to alleviate the cars in the yard blocking sight distance for pedestrians. This looks like a lot of intersections ‘upgraded’ in the 80s and 90s with really poor slip lanes and turn lanes.
“Miffy, yet again I completely agree with you.”
What on earth is going on….
Three times this week. I’m feeling a bit dizzy.
Cycle Action Network has a list of all cycling deaths here
I am surprised to see none on Broadway in Newmarket/Parnell Road, a popular cycle route for commuters of which I frequent – while you can utilize the bus lanes on the straight sections of Parnell Road, the intersections and opportunity for ‘dooring’ along the shopping strip is high.
Mount Wellington Highway and Sylvia Park Rd doesn’t appear to have any light controlled crossing points now (you have to cross somewhere else). The path runs out if coming from the Otahuhu end.
It’s always been like that, presumably because its an industrial area and they assumed that no one wants to walk.
Nielsen St Lights
And hope you don’t mind me going on about it, but posted an FOI on October 13th 2020 for the design history – including comments from within and outside AT – for the design for the “Safety Upgrades” for St Heliers.
Even with the Ombudsman’s support I still still have not received this info. Well over 1 year!!!!
The improvements have not improved safety, except for the 30km/hr limit which is ignored. And when I take the lane I get bullied by drivers especially enormous SUVs and double cab utes.
It might be worth specifically requesting the road safety audits, and the design drawings sent to the consultant for preparation of each audit. Then you are naming a specific document which is going to give you a lot of the information. This removes the wriggle room that AT can use to get out of a really broad and vague request like the one you made.
John Bonner was killed crossing the road with his bicycle in Te Atatū Peninsula in December 2017, at a spot that had regularly been identified by residents as problematic (the cycleway on one side comes to an end and restarts on the the other side of the road). A new light controlled crossing was completed there in April 2021, nearly 3 1/2 years later. https://www.bikeauckland.org.nz/wake-tragedy-vision-zero-te-atatu-peninsula/ https://www.bikeauckland.org.nz/right-move-wrong-place-safer-crossing-te-atatu/
Pepe Faleolo was killed crossing the road near Elcoat Ave, Te Atatu South/Glendene in July 2018. This spot is at a bus stop is in the middle of 650m without a safe crossing. “Auckland Transport spokesman Mark Hannan said it was carrying out an investigation to understand the safety issues along the Te Atatū Rd corridor to improve the safety for vulnerable road users.” Existing zebras along Te Atatū Rd have now been raised but there’s no extra facility at this spot.
Pedestrian crossings adjacent to bus stops should be by default.
For somebody commuting to, or from that location, they will either have to cross the road prior to their outbound bus journey, or cross the road at the completion of their inbound bus journey.
AT needs to get it’s head around that collectively it is a transport integrator, not a bunch of silos protecting their own special patches of turf.
“I do not accept AT’s conclusion that the road was not the primary contributing factor to the crash,” Coroner Ho said. “It was.”
Where I currently reside all pedestrian movements at signals are exclusively phased with no filtering traffic and new/retrofits junctions are designed for those with mobility challenges.
This is another reason NZ needs a nationwide compulsory vision zero/net zero carbon design manual.
The environment in Auckland is so shit, and East Auckland is the worst in my opinion. It truly makes me depressed. Thank you Greater Auckland for your advocacy and passion for a better city.
East Auckland has terrible roads for all road users – vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists included.
The bigger structural issue here is that the people who originally designed and built these intersections (based on faulty principles and values) have progressed in their careers and are now in positions of considerable influence (e.g. management and executive level). It is quite hard for someone who has built their career on delivering things that are now demonstrable failures to change their worldview and undo everything they have built their career on. Hence the lack of urgency in addressing these problems and the focus on doing more of the same.
Ego is a huge barrier, yes.
What about a response to this nonsense….
Anecdotally, I have been breath tested twice at police checkpoints in the last week – both in South Auckland.
It is not just AT that is dysfunctional here, but our entire global obsession with road-transport, and our tacit support of its over-prioritisation and under-regulation. Most people don’t really care that an estimated 1.3 million people worldwide die each year because of road accidents, with 10-20 times that number injured. This includes most governments, councils, policy-makers and legislators. They may say they care but the reality is that few are willing or prepared to make the sweeping changes necessary to make a meaningful difference. Preventing accidents occurring on the road is a far lower priority than preventing accidents occurring elsewhere and that is what most of the world unquestioningly accepts. It is baked-in to our mindset. AT’s attitude is simply part of this global pattern and for it to be anything different would make it seriously stand out.
A school of thought says that their crashes, not accidents: accidents “just happen”, but crashes have a cause.
A real issue is that for safer modes of transport (eg rail, air) we investigate crashes – and near-misses – in great detail by subject experts to avoid a repetition, but for the least safe mode (road) we investigate them for prosecution purposes (and near-misses not at all), or in the case of deaths in much less published detail in a more generalist way. Dumb!
Northcross is terrible. It has three slip lanes, one of which has awful visibility and is treated like a de facto race track.
Roscommon Road northbound from Wiri Oil Services to 141 is missing any footpath, let alone a bike lane.
Southbound murderous slip lane/painted bike lane combo into Puaki Drive, followed by the disappearance of footpath and bike lane until after Wiri Station Road.
Roscommon/Wiri Station Road intersection itself has no accommodation for pedestrians crossing, because no footpath. It does have generous slip lanes to allow turns without braking to and from the 80kph section of Roscommon Road.
That 80km/h section of Roscommon Road is useless and should be 60km/h anyway because of all the traffic lights and truck traffic.
Ellerslie – Ladies Mile for the 1.5km from Peach Parade to Main Highway there is nowhere safe to cross. Neither of the two sets of traffic lights, which are in the busiest section, have pedestrian legs, this despite having 18,000 vehicles per week day. Morrin Street is similar, 13,000 vehicles per week day and a pedestrian refuge the forces you to then cross Robert Street, also busy with nowhere safe to cross. Main Highway from Robert St, with 15,000 vehicles per week day, has a pedestrian crossing in the village (consultation underway for a raised table!), but only a narrow pedestrian refuge at the train station and 50km/h speed limit.