Waikato, Tauranga expressway speed limits rise to 110kmh

Speed limits on two North Island expressways will increase to 110kmh from today. 

NZ Transport Agency announced the new speed limit, the highest on any road in the country, for sections of the Waikato Expressway and Tauranga Eastern Link in late November.  

New limits come into force on both sections from Monday.

In the Waikato the new limit stretches 16km from Tamahere, east of Hamilton, to the interchange south of Cambridge. 

Government to raise top speed limit to 110kmh this year
New law to pave the way for 110kmh speed limit on some roads 
Government gives thumbs up to 110kmh speed limit on some roads
Survey shows surge in public support for 110kmh limit
No 'thresholds' on ticketing speedsters over 110kmh limit on Waikato Expressway

And on Tauranga Eastern Link's toll road, the 15km stretch from the Paengaroa roundabout to the Domain Rd interchange will be governed by the new limit. 

Waikato road policing manager Inspector Marcus Lynam has urged drivers not to treat the 110kmh as a target.

It is the maximum speed a driver can travel in ideal conditions, he said. 

"Staff can give a ticket to someone doing one kilometre over the speed limit, if under the circumstances it's not ideal conditions or it's unsafe.

"But we need to be reasonable in our enforcement and that's important."

Individual officers would use discretion in ticketing speedsters, and anyone found driving in an unsafe manner could be ticketed even a kilometre over the new limits. 

Over the holiday period, from 6am on December 18 to 6am on January 8, the speed camera tolerance would be 4kmh over the limit on mobile and fixed speed cameras. 

The changes followed an extensive consultation process in which the NZTA received almost 11,500 submissions from the public and stakeholders.

Both roads were selected for the new limit as they are designed and engineered to be two of the safest sections of road in the country, NZTA said. 

Both are multi-lane highways, with a number of safety features including wide shoulders and median barriers to separate oncoming traffic as well as barriers on the left to prevent vehicles running off the road.

The new limits are consistent with speed limits on roads of the same quality in other countries around the world including Australia.

 - Stuff