Government aims for 40 per cent reduction in road deaths, serious injuries by 2030

The Government is committing to increasing road safety funding by 25 per cent to $1 billion a year over the next decade. 

It comes as a move to introduce roadside drug testing was announced yesterday. It would include testing for some prescription drugs. 

It will initially test for THC, methamphetamine, opiates, cocaine, MDMA (ecstasy), and benzodiazepines, which are the most prevalent and high-risk drugs and medications. 

The funding boost will pay for the testing, with each test costing between $25-$45, 1000 kilometres of median crash barriers, 1700 kilometres of equipment that can include rumble strips and roadside crash barriers, and intersection upgrades. 

Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter said a new target has been set to reduce death and serious injury on the road by 40 per cent by 2030. 

"Meeting this target would save 750 lives and prevent 5600 serious injuries on New Zealand roads over the next decade," she said. 

"This plan proposes greater investment in proven safety upgrades like median barriers, roundabouts and safe cycling infrastructure."

The Government's strategy report, Road to Zero, estimated that almost half of the 40 per cent reduction target would need to be achieved through infrastructure and speed management.

"It is estimated that this will require an investment of at least $5 billion over the 10-year period," the report says. 

"This represents an investment of $500 million per year, or $1.5 billion for each three-year National Land Transport Programme period,"