Newell Rd residents riled by speedsters

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Newell Rd, Tamahere residents are angry about inaction on speedsters, an issue highlighted by a recent car crash.

A child narrowly avoided being hit by falling powerlines in what Newell Rd residents say is yet another speed-related accident along their road, the Waikato Times reported.

The Tamahere residents are fed up and want Waikato District Council to fix the problem.

Newell Rd resident Rowena Edge said a mother and daughter narrowly avoided falling power lines in last Wednesday night’s crash.

The pair were at the intersection of Riverglade Dr and Newell Rd when a car went “flying through a dip in the road, losing control and taking out two power poles”.

“She was in fear for both herself and her daughter’s lives as the power poles came down next to her,” Mrs Edge said.

Mrs Edge’s neighbour, Clare Gordon, heard the car coming and got her seven-year-old son Connor off the grass verge just moments before the accident.

“I had to run out and scoop him up. Then I realised the power poles were coming down. I had no idea which way they were going to fall,” Mrs Gordon said. “It was actually quite terrifying.”

Residents were without power until 4.30am the next day.

Mrs Edge said it was lucky no one was killed.

She said the road – which had a 80kmh limit – was notorious for speedsters. Wednesday’s accident was the fourth serious crash outside their house in the last six years.

Residents were fed up.

“People perceive it as a short cut and the hoons use it,” Mrs Edge said.

“We have approached the police, but they do a spurt (targeting speeders) and then we don’t see them for ages.”

The problem was highlighted in the 2004 Tamahere Community Plan “and still nothing has been done”.

“The community are wondering if it is going to take someone to die for some action to finally happen.”

Tamahere ward councillor Wally Hayes had put forward a proposal that would see Newell Rd closed at the intersection with Airport Rd – reducing a lot of the through traffic.

He hoped to have a feasibility study completed early next year – but had to first get Transit NZ on board.

“It’s a historic problem, which has got worse because of increasing development in the area.”

Waikato District Council roading group manager Ian Gooden said the council understood people’s concerns and money had been put aside in this year’s budget for traffic calming measures along the road.

However, they were still waiting on information to see what type of measure would fit best.

“It is part of the projects that will be run our towards the end of the first quarter next year – April or May.

“Our first step is to talk to the police about increasing patrols in that area.”

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