Record low number of bridge strikes on Auckland motorways

Friday, August 10, 2018

The NZ Transport Agency is pleased to report a record low for reported bridge strikes on the Auckland motorway network in the last year.

There were two reported strikes during the 2017/18 financial year, compared with 11 in 2016/17 and 16 in 2015/16.

“We’d like to thank heavy vehicle drivers for being vigilant and checking their load heights before driving on the motorway network. It helps keep the motorways safe for all road users,” says NZTA’s senior system manager Wayne Oldfield.

“Any bridge strike on a busy motorway is dangerous, disruptive and can be avoided. The reduced number of reported incidents shows that drivers are taking care, showing good awareness and responding to warnings if detected.”

The maximum height for any vehicle travelling on the Auckland motorway network is 4.3 metres.

“The reduction in bridge strikes is likely to be due to several measures including increased signage and awareness of height restrictions,” says Oldfield.

The NZTA installed an upgraded over-height detection system on the motorway network in 2016. If the system is triggered, it warns drivers and gives them time to pull over or detour off the motorway.

In addition, a height measuring card is freely available for drivers to check heights before travel, and recent changes to permissible vehicle dimensions, including heights, helps to ensure trucks with large loads can move safely around the motorway network.

Freight companies have embraced the changes and the NZTA thanks them for their focus on checking and adjusting transport loads to ensure they meet industry standards and regulations.

Vehicles most likely to hit a motorway bridge are open-topped container trucks with over-height loads, truck-mounted hydraulic cranes, such as those that lift large containers, and diggers with an arm and bucket.