Some locals have welcomed the speed changes along SH6 but others ‘hate’ it. Photo: File.

Uncertainty over big SH6 slowdown


Speed changes between Nelson and Blenheim have met mixed reviews since they came into effect last month.

Majority of speeds were reduced on December 18 along the stretch of road linking the two towns after NZTA spent more than a year analysing community feedback.

Tasman road policing manager Grant Andrews says, so far, officers have been taking an educative approach towards the new speed limits, giving out warnings instead of infringements.

“That is about to change though, people have had a month to get used to it plus the lead up to the changes, so there is no excuse now.”

Some Nelson North residents have called the move “brilliant”, “less stressful” and a “huge win”, while others labelled some of the drops “ridiculous”, “unnecessary”.

Gentle Annie resident Joanne Ragg says the change outside her home from 100kmh to 80kmh has been “hugely positive” from her perspective.

“I’m coming out with a horse float most of the time and knowing when you come out of that driveway someone isn’t going to fly over the top of the hill, it’s great. It may take a little bit longer to get out, but I’d rather feel safer.”

She says she has also noticed a reduction in noise and with her husband working in The Glen says that intersection with the state highway is also much safer.

“I think they’ll find the number of accidents will greatly reduce, and I’ve found it hasn’t made that much difference to the travel times, even through to Blenheim.”

However, Tui Glen resident Sarah Canning “hates” the changes at the bottom of her hill where the highway is now 80kmh.

She travels the trip from Atawhai to Hira two-three times a day to take her children to school and kindergarten and says although school isn’t back yet the difference in traffic is huge.

“I get to the bottom of the hill and I’m waiting forever, the cars they’re bumper to bumper and it’s not only one lane to cross but two.

“I’m fine with the 60kmh zone through Atawhai, I see kids on their bikes all the time, I wish they’d done that for Hira too.”

She says she knows the traffic will only get worse when school goes back.

“It’s really frustrating. I’m not enjoying driving and I used to really enjoy my drive out there but now I’m a frustrated driver with kids in the car and that’s the worst combination.”