Death highlights need for SH2 upgrade

Police and emergency services are the scene of the crash. Photo: Carmel Jacob.

Planned upgrades to a treacherous stretch of road on State Highway Two need to be sped up, or more people will die, says a Tauranga City councillor.

One person was killed and two others seriously injured on the highway, near Whakamarama, yesterday afternoon.

The crash closed the highway for several hours as emergency services worked to clear the scene and police conducted a scene examination.

The crash happened around 3.30pm and the highway was open at about 11.30pm.

The stretch is infamous for the many deaths and injuries there over the years.

Last year, the government announced a half-billion-dollar upgrade to the Waihi-to-Tauranga corridor.

It’s expected to be complete by 2022.

But Terry Molloy, a district councillor who also chairs the area’s AA board, is calling on the government to fast-track the improvements.

"It is overdue, it is a nasty piece of road. I think in any difficult stretch of highway we need to put pressure on and it needs to be fixed soon.

"There are lives being lost and people being injured on it an we need to do something about it."


Spot on RR

Posted on 24-12-2017 11:57 | By maildrop

Aggressive drivers. Idiots. If they don’t crash here they will find somewhere else to crash. You can’t upgrade every road and stop idiots being idiots. You can prevent them from driving though through a revised licencing regime.

The issue

Posted on 13-12-2017 15:02 | By Merlin

One of the issues is on the side roads trying to get onto the main highway.In the case of the intersection of Omokoroa road and Quarry road they are both on a rise and you do not have much time to actually see if a vehicle is coming up the rise to make your decision especially those that regularly exceed the 90km speed limit.I live in the area and there have been 6 fatalities whilst I have lived there.Urgent action is required.

The Truth

Posted on 09-12-2017 19:26 | By Maryfaith

When young idiots stop trying to race each other to be ahead before the merging lane runs out, accidents like the latest at Te Puna would never have happened!! In most instances it is the older/innocent driver and their passengers who wear the cost of this stupidity!!

Make SH2 a road of national significance

Posted on 04-12-2017 21:29 | By Bay Citizen

Have to disagree with Miss Adventure. SH2 from Katikati to Tga needs the promised upgrade to road of national significance, not downgrading to a country back road. The population of the western bay is growing fast and we need new infrastructure to cope. It is also the shortest and fastest route between Akl and Tga, and that is not ever going to change. At the moment, with only two lanes, few passing places and poor junctions, SH2 engenders frustration and consequent risk taking to join (or exit) the traffic flow and then overcome an unholy mix of slow moving agricultural vehicles, holiday makers/campervans and a large number of elderly drivers . Yes, we can all agree that people should drive with more care and attention, but we also have to understand the psychology of what causes accidents and engineer roads to decrease the road toll.

Right on the money...

Posted on 04-12-2017 17:51 | By GreertonCynic

Chookymac. Wasn’t this one of the "roads of national significance?". As to other comments, this is a SERIOUSLY bad road. Bad camber, bad surface, bad routing. I’ve lost count of the scary moments between Te Puke and Waihi.


Posted on 04-12-2017 15:05 | By Chookymac

I made a comment this very morning on this incident relating to how little Simon Bridges did re the roads in this area in his time as MP for this area.(edited)

I agree RR.... you beat me.....

Posted on 04-12-2017 14:54 | By GreertonBoy

to it.... I remember when alot of roads were still dirt and I am only in mid 50’s. From Barks corner up Pyes Pa road was a cattle track and we went to Rotorua via Kawerau, most tar roads were pretty average. Todays roads are fabulous in comparison.. cars and tyres are heaps better too... so that just leaves the ’nut behind the wheel’ (no, not the one holding the steering wheel on) As you say RR, the roads dont do any harm, it is either driver inattention, badly maintained vehicle/tyres or not driving to the conditions (or drivers skill level). The funds for making every road absolutely perfect and safe is not fathomable, considering that people will still crash cars on perfect roads... Drivers need to take responsibility for their driving and stop squealing ’the road did it’ when they crash.... Condolences to deceased’s family tho...


Posted on 04-12-2017 13:45 | By Anton

Police dont have to be more visible on the road, They should be in halls to teach people how to drive,and learn them the rules, How many know how to indicate at roundabouts, that means that they probably dont know other rules as well.And not picking on people who are driving 5 km/h to fast. How many know how to drive on motorways, just throw a dice in which lane they drive, It is keep to the left, unless passing.But I doubt we will learn.

This road IS dangerous

Posted on 04-12-2017 12:31 | By comfortablynumb

Ever tried turning right from the SH2 into Te Puna Quarry Rd ? There is no split median to do so safely and you risk a head on collision with someone turning right into Snodgrass Rd. This junction like many others on the SH2 needs upgrading ASAP.

@ Road Ranger

Posted on 04-12-2017 12:14 | By MISS ADVENTURE

You are right, however the limitation here is that the mental capacity of the average driver is unable to recognise reality here. Instead attempting to dominate the roads and so the consequences are ignored. The better plan would be to downgrade SH2 to the appropriate level - country back road. The logical answer is to have the Kaimais as SH2 and link it across to the SH1 4-laning thats coming south already. All the country hicks then can stay in the Cormandel area through to katikati, all the upwardly mobile outsiders will all be able to then travel more eficiently via the Kaimai’s.

Policing is Good, Driving is Agressive

Posted on 04-12-2017 09:59 | By Roadside Ranger

The road policing unit does a very good job along this stretch of SH2. They have done so for many years. Driver aggression towards others venturing onto SH2 from the side roads is, however, something that has to be experienced to be appreciated. Trying to get across traffic even where there are merge lanes is an uncomfortable and regular issue for many.

Hello, Terry, an update for you.

Posted on 04-12-2017 09:51 | By Murray.Guy

Today we read of the RMA application under way. Construction funding for the Tauranga Northern Link (TNL) was granted in April 2016 as part of the $520 million Waihi to Tauranga Corridor programme to improve road safety, support economic development and regional growth along this busy regional highway.


Posted on 04-12-2017 09:33 | By namxa

Youre right on the money Roadranger

Road Ranger

Posted on 04-12-2017 09:04 | By penguin

Couldn’t agree more with your sentiments! I am sure most drivers don’t realise how lethal their vehicles are when they (drivers) make errors of judgment or make stupid decisions. Pilots of aircraft take more care than many drivers. A good return on investment would be to channel some of the fix-the-road-resources into better driver training and testing.


Posted on 04-12-2017 08:43 | By philiphallen

Its not the road, but the idiots that drive it that cause the problem.

Education Needed

Posted on 04-12-2017 07:03 | By Road Ranger

How many times do we hear "It’s the roads fault". Actually it’s NOT - It’s driver error!! Thousands of vehicles travel over this stretch of road daily and there is very few accidents. Drivers need to drive to the conditions and focus 100% on the road and the safety of themselves, their passengers and other road users. Again the Police need to be more visible on our roads, in the "old" days of MoT Traffic Officers they were everywhere. It was good to see last week an "unmarked" patrol car on the TEL ticketing a speedster - need to do it more with the new 110kmph speed limit coming into force shortly and Xmas approaching.

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