The New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) is planning to begin safety improvement works by mid-year on the Mornington Road to Mosgiel section of the Dunedin Southern Motorway.

As part of the safety improvement plan, the highway agency will be installing a wide centre line or median barrier in order to decrease the risk of head-on crashes. 

NZTA will also be deploying an additional side barrier and use high-performance road markings to improve visibility at night and in wet conditions. 

The project, which is part of a nationwide NZ$600m ($415m) Safe Road and Roadsides programme, will be executed by NZTA on behalf of the government. 

New Zealand Transport Agency Southern Region business unit manager Ian Duncan said: “Two people died and 34 were seriously injured on this section of SH1 in the ten years from 2006 and 2015. Most fatal and serious injury crashes on this route are caused by drivers running off the road.”

"Two people died and 34 were seriously injured on this section of SH1 in the ten years from 2006 and 2015."

Upon completion, these improvement works are expected to enhance the safety of motorists using this section of the road and help reduce the impact of collisions.

Duncan further explained that most of the crashes occurred in this region, involved a vehicle hitting a roadside hazard such as a tree, ditch or a fence. 

NZTA anticipates that the safety measures planned on this section of motorway would reduce such incidents, and when an accident takes place it would significantly reduce the impact,  as well as helping decrease deaths and seriously injuries. 

The primary objective of this programme is to make rural routes on the highway network safer over the next six years.

For this, NZTA will be installing rumble strips, better signage and speed limit changes as well as would widen the road shoulders.

Improvement works are expected to finish by next year.??????