Unreasonable expectations (27 Apr, 2022)

Have your say on today's Aardvark Daily column

Unreasonable expectations (27 Apr, 2022)

Postby aardvark_admin » Wed Apr 27, 2022 6:45 am

This column is archived at: https://aardvark.co.nz/daily/2022/0427.shtml

The only thing worse than not having a goal is to have an unattainable one.

Is the NZTA's "Road to Zero" campaign a silly waste of time and taxpayer's money?

Would my suggestion (with more attainable goals and real rewards) generate a much greater level of buy-in from the public and thus produce more actual results?

Is this simply the work of a bunch of over-paid and underworked bureaucrats who are striving to justify their existance and salaries by creating a programme that seems to check the boxes but does absolutely nothing to really address the issue?

And, in the wake of the Easter and ANZAC weekend road fatalities, do we have irrefutable proof that the public are not having a bean of the "Road to Zero"?
Site Admin
Posts: 5660
Joined: Wed May 07, 2014 2:10 pm

Re: Unreasonable expectations (27 Apr, 2022)

Postby roygbiv » Wed Apr 27, 2022 7:46 am

I initially thought that NZTAs message was about it being the journey and not the destination that mattered. Until I read the link to their site, not so much a vision but an unrealistic dream.
It would be interesting to hear from people at the sharp end such as police, ambulance, fire service, I am sure they are more in touch with reality.
User avatar
Posts: 349
Joined: Wed May 21, 2014 9:28 pm

Re: Unreasonable expectations (27 Apr, 2022)

Postby Perry » Wed Apr 27, 2022 8:00 am

Bruce wrote:It strikes me that we have a lot of dead wood in government departments and NZers could have their tax dollars spent on much more useful things than the "Road to Zero".
I'm sure it hasn't just now "struck you." :o

What would be nice to know is how to prune off all that dead wood so taxpayers get value for money.
Posts: 1561
Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 9:31 pm

Re: Unreasonable expectations (27 Apr, 2022)

Postby GSVNoFixedAbode » Wed Apr 27, 2022 8:05 am

It's a good goal, and an attainable one. IF and only IF, people give up on a few base precepts:
- the idea that the car is king,
- might is right.
- urban speed
Other countries that have achieved close to singe-digit road deaths have done exactly that: an inverse hierarchy of both automatic blame and right-of-way, and reduced speeds in all urban and semi-urban environments (30kph max). The pedestrian becomes King, scooters/cycles/wheelchairs are royalty, and cars / trucks are the serfs. So if a car hits a pedestrian, truck hits a bicycle, even cycle hits a pedestrian, the former is automatically at fault unless they can prove otherwise. Surprisingly, it works very well.

This would require that people give up on the car being an extension of their ego, and NZTA/WK have the legal & regulatory powers to enforce it. Will that happen? Only when the horned red guy has to strap on his ice skates.
Posts: 558
Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 8:53 am

Re: Unreasonable expectations (27 Apr, 2022)

Postby greven » Wed Apr 27, 2022 8:10 am

Would you consider speed camera tickets to count against the registered owner of the vehicle, or would you disregard them entirely?
Posts: 256
Joined: Fri May 09, 2014 1:41 pm
Location: Invercargill

Re: Unreasonable expectations (27 Apr, 2022)

Postby hiscoca » Wed Apr 27, 2022 8:24 am

Some good ideas and points.
This program is based on one of the Scandi countries move to trying to get a Zero Road toll, but there approach was to throw huge money at road infrastructure, improve driver education and so on
Posts: 79
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 7:57 am

Re: Unreasonable expectations (27 Apr, 2022)

Postby hagfish » Wed Apr 27, 2022 9:35 am

It's the name of their campaign. A bunch of marketing wonks working out of their back bedrooms came up with some ideas, and argued it down to this one. I expect the conversation went:
"We want to get the road toll down - at least halve it. What's a reasonable number? Maybe 100 dead each year?"
"Oof, that sounds like 100 deaths is acceptable! Some kind of target to reach!"
"Alright, let's hear a better number"
"Well, 'zero', obviously."
"What!? Zero is completely unrealistic - the public will laugh at us!"
10 minutes later
"Fine, 'zero' it is. Did you see those new plaid Allbirds omg so cute!"

Autonomous vehicles are not 'just around the corner'. If Transmission Gully cost about $50m/Km, and we have 11,000Km of state highways, upgrading the whole lot will cost ... a bit. And no amount of flash new motorways would have saved those kids in Invercargill.

Or we could:
- drop speed limits to 80Km/hr for roads that have no solid median barrier (at the cost of replacing thousands of signs, and possibly some productivity)
- properly crack down on distracted driving. The idea of using your phone at all in the car should go the way of lighting up a cigarette in the office. My phone can bark directions at me from the ash tray, but that's it. (cost: a relentless marketing campaign - enough to buy the ad director a yellow Model S)
- focus on 'fatigued' driving. We know, now, it's not the tourists causing all the crashes. It's us.
- I spent several hours on the open road yesterday. Traffic was heavy, but everyone was good as gold. Everyone except for those dudes in their Rangers. I don't know how many fatal crashes they are responsible for (maybe not that many) but it would be nice for the rest of us if they would pull their heads in.
- better rail services, for passengers and freight.
- gradual phasing out of private vehicles in cities. This is well underway. Taking a car into Wellington is a bad way to spend your day. God help youse Aucklanders.
Posts: 1147
Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 10:28 am

Re: Unreasonable expectations (27 Apr, 2022)

Postby phord » Wed Apr 27, 2022 9:45 am

Maybe NZTA is using an undisclosed loophole to attain their goal:
"zero deaths and serious injuries on New Zealand roads"

The above words by their definition, might only apply to accidents where no drivers are held responsible by the authorities.
Posts: 165
Joined: Mon May 12, 2014 2:05 pm

Re: Unreasonable expectations (27 Apr, 2022)

Postby paulw » Wed Apr 27, 2022 3:30 pm

Only way to achieve this is to ban all cars or have a man with a red flag walk in front of all vehicles.
Posts: 479
Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 8:33 am

Re: Unreasonable expectations (27 Apr, 2022)

Postby phill » Wed Apr 27, 2022 3:37 pm

a few years ago i touched on this area with a mate who is an ex towie and long time panel beater
his spiel was ...

" if they were purposes it might be possible .. but they are called accidents for a reason "
( ,,,,,,,, ....... '''''' to too tu two A E I O U use em sparingly there's probably not enough )

i might live and eat in a sewer .. but hey look how many of these shiny things i have got
User avatar
Posts: 2945
Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2014 8:31 pm


Return to Today's column

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Kiwiiano and 18 guests