Expect a busy weekend on the roads

The NZ Transport Agency says state highways in Auckland and Northland will be particularly busy this Easter as the long weekend coincides with the start of school holidays.

Drivers are urged to plan ahead to stay safe and avoid delays on the roads.

The Transport Agency’s travel team has put together maps to show the expected peak holiday traffic times to help people decide the best time to travel to avoid the queues. More details can be found at www.nzta.govt.nz/hotspots.

“We know we’ll see large numbers of people heading out of the main centres to their usual holiday destinations and that makes queues and delays inevitable at the most popular times to travel,” says Brett Gliddon, the Transport Agency’s Auckland and Northland Highway Manager.

Heading out of Auckland the traffic will start to build on SH1 in both directions from mid-morning on Thursday right through to about 8pm.

It’s likely to remain heavy for much of the day on Friday especially between Puhoi and Wellsford, on the Southern Motorway from Takanini and on State Highway 2 to Coromandel.

“If everyone plans their travel in advance, and thinks about how they can travel outside the busiest periods it will help reduce delays and stress and that will make it a safer and more enjoyable journey for everyone.”

“The hot spot predictions, which are based on previous holiday data have proved really popular in helping people make informed decisions about when to travel, but these should also be used alongside real time travel information,” says Mr Gliddon.

“As well as a range of technology, teams will also be monitoring and managing traffic flows and incidents on the state highway network throughout the holiday period and providing up to the minute and accurate information on the best times to travel and less congested routes.”

TIPS FOR PLANNING AHEAD

Predicted peak times can change based on incidents, weather and even driver behaviour so using real time travel information is the best way to get up to date and accurate information about email notifications about road and traffic conditions. Check our Traffic and Travel pages at www.nzta.govt.nz.

Or plan ahead by signing up to www.onthemove.govt.nz to get email notifications about road and traffic conditions on the route you plan to travel.

Don’t forget to check twitter and facebook for regular updates on delays, incidents and congestion hotspots.

Those planning to use the Northern Gateway Toll Road can also make the journey even more hassle free by prepaying their tolls at www.tollroad.govt.nz