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Kia ora Auckland,
Should Queen Street be car-free?
Major roading upgrades are set to get underway on Queen Street which the council says will improve pedestrian spaces.
The work is set to begin on Monday between Shortland and Customs streets, limiting traffic to a single lane each way and with bus priority in the evening peak.
Some have expressed their concerns for the project including a group of businesses and landlords calling itself Save Queen. The group applied for an interim injunction to halt the council's planned Queen St upgrade and a High Court Judge will decide whether to approve the injunction later today.
Should the upgrade go even further and ban passenger vehicles altogether? Let us know in the comments and don't forget to type NFP if you don't want your comment used in your local community paper.
Drivers have been captured on camera boldly using their phones while driving, to video call, text and make calls.
The footage, taken in Auckland, comes as the Government increased the cost of a fine for using a cellphone while driving from $80 to $150.
Over the course of a week, ahead of the fine increase, a Stuff visual journalist captured numerous people using their phones while driving, including a woman who appeared to be on a video call while passing through an intersection, a man speaking on the phone and numerous people texting or looking at their phone.
Last year, police issued more than 40,000 infringement notices for the offence.
A driver for Dingo Groundworx NZ was captured using their phone while driving a truck along Williamson Ave, in Ponsonby.
Owner Cameron Hadley told Stuff all employees were very aware they should not be using their phones while driving.
He said he would be raising the issue in a staff meeting.
AA road safety spokesman Dylan Thomsen told Stuff he wasn’t surprised to hear about the woman video calling while driving.
While AA supports the Government’s fine increase, Thomsen said it wasn’t going to solve the problem.
“People just can’t resist the temptation if they hear their phone go off ... it’s not something you do by accident.”
“A lot of people use their phone behind the wheel and don’t do other risky things.”
He hopes as there are further advancements in technology, phone companies can have default “do not disturb” modes that activate as soon as drivers start moving in their car.
“Until we change the mindset it will be hard with enforcement alone, people don’t appreciate the risks until it’s too late,” Thomsen said.
To see video footage, go here:
*Please put NFP if you do not want your comments used by Stuff.
90.2% Yes90.2% Complete
7.9% No7.9% Complete
1.9% Unsure- it's too complex1.9% Complete
Cleared out under a house as the house was being sold. The job didn't take long and some of the items pulled out were recycled as well as sold on which saved on dumping charges as well as the final bill.