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Transporting waste by rail to and from a proposed landfill site in north Auckland could help divert hundreds of trucks from a deadly road, residents say.
If Waste Management's proposed Auckland Regional Landfill gets the go ahead, the Mahurangi East Residents and Ratepayers Association (MERRA) wants waste to be transported via the Northern Rail Line, instead of by road on State Highway 1, which is known for its high number of fatal car crashes in the area.
The deadly stretch of road through Dome Valley claimed 27 lives between 2000 and 2018, according to NZTA Crash Analysis System data.
Twenty-seven people died in crashes on State Highway 1 in the Dome Valley between 2000 and 2018. (file photo)
The landfill is predicted to add 300 return trips by waste trucks and 150 by light vehicles to SH1 per day, with this number set to increase to 500 waste trucks and 250 light vehicles return trips by 2060. This would see an average of 54 vehicles coming and going from the landfill every hour of the day from 5am until 10pm.
MERRA said the prospect of adding that many vehicles to the road was "simply unacceptable".
Its proposal for transporting waste by rail states the road is heavily relied on by Auckland's northernmost ratepayers and connects them to critical facilities, such as hospitals and airports.
"We argue that any eventual consents should include a requirement that bulk waste is transported by rail from Auckland utilising the existing but grossly under-used Auckland to Whangarei rail line that passes within 2 kilometres of the proposed landfill site."
It also noted the increased risk of damage to the road from heavy trucks, added noise and vibration to neighbouring houses, and the slippery road-surface pollution, evident at the Redvale landfill.
This article first appeared on www.stuff.co.nz
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