Driving in New Zealand



  • @MajorRage wait until you get to the UK where the drivers have serious schizophrenia problems. One moment they are stopping on a straight road to let someone out of a side road (because they are considerate), nek minute its hard on the horn behind you because you are stopped as there is a delivery truck blocking the lane.

    best thing though is once you get onto the big roads well away from London no one seems to give a shit what speed you go and you can cruise at 80-90 mph like it's an autobahn.



  • However, myself included, I think we have a very competitive streak in our driving in NZ. If someone is in front of you, they should be behind you (unless it is night and they are doing a good speed which makes life easy following them).
    The thing that pisses me off in NZ is the arbitrary speed limits. A straight smooth good road has the same limit as a piece of narrow single track.
    Speed is by far the easiest thing the cops can put a limit on and control, and they do so to the extent of ignoring slow drivers and idiots that follow too closely or don't get out of my way.



  • @Crucial said in Driving in New Zealand:

    However, myself included, I think we have a very competitive streak in our driving in NZ. If someone is in front of you, they should be behind you (unless it is night and they are doing a good speed which makes life easy following them).
    The thing that pisses me off in NZ is the arbitrary speed limits. A straight smooth good road has the same limit as a piece of narrow single track.
    Speed is by far the easiest thing the cops can put a limit on and control, and they do so to the extent of ignoring slow drivers and idiots that follow too closely or don't get out of my way.

    You talking about the "open road" speed limit?

    Yes a dirt track has the same speed limit. That doesn't mean you can go that speed.

    On those sort of backroads it would be impractical to try and sign post a lower limit, and speed restrictions tend to be self imposed.

    FYI assigning a lower speed limit to a piece of road in NZ requires a fairly strict compliance with specific criteria.

    I got myself into a bit of a tangle back in the day (late 90s) as the Council I was working for required some 70k signs to be put up in a specific location.

    Somebody told me to check out how to ensure these were gazetted properly.

    In order to make it legal you had to plug in various criteria like traffic volume, % heavies, road width, shoulder width, number of side roads, number of entrances, number of pedestrians, presence of children/schools, shops/businesses, distance to obstacles ... the programme would then drop out the recommended limit. Which would then require a proper gazetting process.

    You couldn't just whack up some signs on a whim. Well you could (and they did) but not legally. And it wouldn't be enforceable if someone knew and challenged it.

    Different on this side of the Tassie where I'm pretty sure Councils can just slap up a sign.



  • @booboo Yeah I totally understand that some roads that are 'open' are in no way suitable to 100kph ley alone faster, or in many cases even nearing that. You drive to the circumstances.

    It is more on the other side of the equation where a dual highway of straight well sealed road with median barriers and multiple lanes is restricted to a speed that is well below 'safe' capabilities in a modern vehicle.

    I can drive an equivalent vehicle on an equivalent road in Europe 30kph faster with no problem whatsoever



  • @Crucial There is a move to increase the speed limit on certain stretches of the main highways to 110 kph.

    Still not the same as travelling around Europe at 130 kph.



  • Couple of years ago, I drove frok Hokitika to Wanaka via Haast Pass on a gorgeous April day (midweek so not much traffic). Un-fucking-believable. I'm surprised there aren't more crashes from simply taking in the scenery - I won't forget that affording vista in a hurry.

    Plus the pepper steak pie from the Franz Josef foodmart was not only tasty but was at a reasonable price point.



  • @Crucial said in Driving in New Zealand:

    Speed is by far the easiest thing the cops can put a limit on and control, and they do so to the extent of ignoring slow drivers and idiots that follow too closely or don't get out of my way.

    Tail gating is a chronic problem. There are fuckwits who seemingly think they can follow at "round town" distances on the open road.

    Nelson is infested with stop-go merchants. They also dig up the same stretches of road about three times a year - presumably as some sort of traffic management or "make work" plan.

    I was talking to my brother the other day about hiring a knuckle boom to prune some roadside trees. He informed me I would doubtless need a TMP ("A what?")...a Traffic Management Plan - or a bureaucrat would doubtless hastily arrive to shut me down.



  • @Crucial said in Driving in New Zealand:

    However, myself included, I think we have a very competitive streak in our driving in NZ. If someone is in front of you, they should be behind you (unless it is night and they are doing a good speed which makes life easy following them).
    The thing that pisses me off in NZ is the arbitrary speed limits. A straight smooth good road has the same limit as a piece of narrow single track.

    What infuriates me the most is dual-lane divided highways like the Hume have almost the same speed limit as the old Princes Highway when people were driving on cross-ply tyres and had drum brakes.

    @Chris-B. said in Driving in New Zealand:

    @Crucial said in Driving in New Zealand:

    Speed is by far the easiest thing the cops can put a limit on and control, and they do so to the extent of ignoring slow drivers and idiots that follow too closely or don't get out of my way.

    Tail gating is a chronic problem. There are fuckwits who seemingly think they can follow at "round town" distances on the open road.

    Welcome to the ACT where most people appear perfectly happy sitting 1-2 car lengths off your arse at 100km/h



  • @Chris-B. nah you should be right, alot of the H & S things dont apply to weekend warriors around the home.

    I nabbed a traffic cone last time they did some works out at my place, we are on an 80km stretch, but vehicles go down 100+ cos its a straight of about a km, so if I am dealing to the flax by the roadside drain, I put the cone in the middle of the road, works a treat 🙂

    Yeah the NZ habit of needing to be the car at the front of the line...not knowing how to use round abouts, not aware that someone slowing, leaving a big fucking gap and flashing thier lights is letting you into the flow of traffic.

    Problem in WHangarei is people still think there are the same number of cars on the road as there was 20 years back...newsflash asshole, the city is prety much twice the size it was, with pretty much twice the number of cars plus visitors



  • Coromandel.
    Ride/drive around that, and then try to tell me that Great Ocean Road is anything special.



  • @Kruse said in Driving in New Zealand:

    Coromandel.
    Ride/drive around that, and then try to tell me that Great Ocean Road is anything special.

    It's not as windy ...



  • What is 50kpm? I would not know how to drive that speed any more.



  • @broughie said in Driving in New Zealand:

    What is 50kpm? I would not know how to drive that speed any more.

    It's a suggestion, not a hard and fast rule



  • Recently went up to Raglan via Taupo. There is a piece of road that takes you to Te Awamutu via Poihipi / Waipapa Rd, which I hadn't been on in decades. Typical Waikato countryside, but I'll tell you what, whoever built that piece of road knew what they were doing. A very satisfying drive

    Next dry weekend I'm going to do it again just because.



  • @Kruse Agree. Take the west-east route from Opotiki around the East Cape. Great views of all the bays.



  • @broughie said in Driving in New Zealand:

    What is 50kpm? I would not know how to drive that speed any more.

    About 3000 kph



  • @JC

    I love that stretch of road, Waipapa Road then down the western access to Tokaanu, then the desert road, makes even a trip to Taihape pretty reasonable.

    The Napier Taupo is now a really nice drive - they've done well improving the pieces which hold you up.



  • @JC said in Driving in New Zealand:

    Recently went up to Raglan via Taupo. There is a piece of road that takes you to Te Awamutu via Poihipi / Waipapa Rd, which I hadn't been on in decades. Typical Waikato countryside, but I'll tell you what, whoever built that piece of road knew what they were doing. A very satisfying drive

    Next dry weekend I'm going to do it again just because.

    Whoever designed the Kapiti expressway put a lot of thought into the landscaping, planting and ponds everywhere. It's a bit disorienting driving the first time though.



  • @JC The road from the bottom of the Hope Saddle to Kohatu is similar. Winds its way down the valley, but you only have to touch your brakes once, maybe twice, if you know it - beautifully cambered!



  • @canefan said in Driving in New Zealand:

    @broughie said in Driving in New Zealand:

    What is 50kpm? I would not know how to drive that speed any more.

    It's a suggestion, not a hard and fast rule

    Backed up by speed cameras and radar? Last time I was back in NZ I rented a car and every time you went faster than around 60 (100 kph) it would start beeping. The radio blaring did not drown it out either.


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