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Horse Riders Encouraged to Speak Up on Road Safety Plan

Contributor:
nzhorseriders
nzhorseriders
Source: NZ Horse Recreation Group
Horse Riders Encouraged to Speak Up on Road Safety Plan

Northland horse riders have until the 13th of March to let the Regional Council know how they view the draft road safety plan.  The current plan makes no mention of horse riders, even though Northland's vision is that "all road users are safe on Northland's roads".

 
Horse riders are not even mentioned in the specific section of the plan for 'vulnerable users', along with pedestrians and cyclists. This is probably because road safety policy and plans are developed only from accident and inury statistics.  Horse riders, however, tend to give up on road riding when they start to feel it is too dangerous.
 
Vivien Dostine, Founder of NZ Horse Recreation says "A problem with the current system for deciding on road safety priorities is that it only looks at road crashes.  Lowering the road toll is very important, but we also need to recognise that some groups of road users are being displaced. Horse riders are entitled to use the roads, but often give up road riding because of close calls with inconsiderate motorists, or poor road design." 
 
Making sure that all Northland's road users are recognised in the road safety plan is important, for riders and ratepayers. When horse riders lose the ability to road ride, they start to look for more off-road recreation.  Providing this is a cost for Council; as are the higher road maintenance costs, when riders use their trucks to get their horses from place to place instead of riding them. 
 

Northland Regional Council Road Safety Plan can be found on online at http://www.nrc.govt.nz/Your-Council/Have-your-say/Draft-Northland-Regional-Road-Safety-Plan-2009---2012/ , or by calling the Council on 0800 002 004.  Submissions on the draft plan close at 4pm on Friday, March 13th.

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