55 Pinged A Day On Grafton Bridge


More people are being zapped for driving over Grafton Bridge when they are not allowed to do so.

New figures gained from Auckland Transport show 14,253 bus-lane infringement notices have been issued in the past 12 months on Grafton Bridge.

That’s about 55 motorists pinged a day.

The bridge is closed to cars from 7am to 7pm during weekdays.

The tickets are $150 a pop.

  • In the five months from June 1 to October 31 2010, 5,438 tickets were issued – a monthly average of 1,087 tickets.
  • In the seven months from November 1 2010 to May 31 2011 Auckland Transport reports 8,815 tickets were issued – a monthly average of 1,259 tickets.
  • At a $150 a pop, the potential revenue gained from the 14,253 tickets issued for Grafton Bridge infringements over the past 12 months is $2,137,950.

Auckland Transport camera man

And that’s got Councillors Cameron Brewer and Calum Penrose going again over such revenue.

Both councillors say they support bus-lanes and the positive contribution they make to public transport. Their concern lies with how they’re being policed.

Brewer says: “When the upgraded bridge reopened in late 2009 as a dedicated bus corridor, a lot of motorists got pinged. However we were assured the numbers would come down and in fact Mayor Len Brown promised that the days of overzealous traffic wardens were behind us. Sadly, the reality is the number of cars being snapped on Grafton Bridge is again tracking upwards.”

Councillor for Manurewa-Papakura Calum Penrose says Auckland Transport’s trigger happy mobile camera units were denting the central city’s reputation.

“A lot of people from down south come into the city and inadvertently get themselves snapped. They simply don’t realise the bridge is closed to cars during the day time. Some don’t even know they’ve done anything wrong until the ticket turns up. They can’t remember seeing any signs or seeing any advertising. It’s leaving a very bad taste in some people’s mouths. I’m getting quite a few complaints.

Cameron Brewer says Auckland Transport should improve signage and says many drivers only see the camera operator when it’s too late.

“This kind of money-hungry militancy could damage Auckland during the Rugby World Cup when we’ve got an extra 41,000 visitors in town. We’ll have a lot of domestic visitors cruising around and overseas visitors in rental cars. Auckland Transport has got to take the pedal off the metal, and deliver on the mayoral promise of treating drivers fairly when it comes to bus-lane infringements,” says Mr Brewer.

Actually I thought the warning signs had been greatly improved in recent times - unlike the early days when the signs seemed either well hidden or too ambiguous to grasp when heading by.





  1. karl says:

    So THIS is not enough for them? Plus all the signs ahead of that? The bus lane text on the road? The numerous headline articles in the Herald?


    What do they want? Somebody blowing a fog horn into their ear? Certain councillors just NEED to pander. Wait for the Herald to “break the story” of how POOR, INNOCENT drivers are being rorted, while the CBD withers on the vine!

    Just close it PERMANENTLY for cars, if Mr Brewer is so worried about how getting tickets degrades the CBD’s image.

  2. Matt L says:

    Most people aren’t missing the signs, they just think they can get away with it because they still think that they have the ‘right’ to drive on any piece of asphalt.

    The only suggestion I would have is to make it a busway 24/7, that would remove any confusion. If not then perhaps they could put up some of those retractable bollards like they have overseas, buses just have a transmitter in them that lowers them and as soon as the bus has passed they raise again.

  3. karl says:

    Matt L - the bollards wouldn’t work here, as the buses would be slowed down pretty badly. Not good for a main bus route.

    Also, the raising bollards are known to constantly need maintenance, because idiots keep trying to drive over them anyway.


  4. Sam says:

    Something all drivers look at at an intersection is the traffic light- could the green light be replaced with an LED light, which only shows a green ‘B’ (rather than a full circle) when the busway is in operation? ‘B’ traffic lights are already used in Auckland at intersections where buses are given priority to go a few seconds before cars.

  5. Scott says:

    @sam, A legislation change would be required to allow bikes, motorbikes and emergency service vehicles across the bridge if you took that action.

  6. rtc says:

    Cameron Brewer really is a pathetic councillor, what has he done aside from whinge about bus lanes, always saying he supports them BUT fining people for driving in them is unfair. Basically he doesn’t support them at all and has no other ideas on how to get into the news aside from his constant attacks on bus lanes. Thanks god we don’t have a mayor like John Banks who shares Cameron Brewer’s views.

  7. Andrew says:

    Instead of hearing him winge about this, I’d like to hear Mr Brewer propose an actual solution to his perceived problem, while still keeping the cars out of the bus lanes and bridge.

    Unless he’s whinging purely to get publicity as most of us suspect.

    Cameron, I know you’ve participated on this site before so it’d be great to hear your answer!

  8. OrangeKiwi says:

    How is this going to damage Auckland when the 40,000 or so visitors are here? Most of them will be looking to use public transport, as they would be more likely used to choosing this option to get around. The only time they’d be using a car around here is when they head out of Auckland in their rental cars. The only thing that will do damage is all the cars holding up the buses they might use that travel Grafton Bridge…

  9. Andrew says:

    @OrangeKiwi, where have you been these past few years? The reason we doubled the width of the SH20/A Airport motorway is explicitly because all these RWC visitors will be bringing their cars with them on the plane.

  10. Doloras says:

    Cameron Brewer is utterly shameless. To think that he used to come on here and post before the election. But now he sees his role as bashing PT in all its forms, to appeal to the car-crazed right-wing vote, for no other reason than to bring Len Brown down. Shame.

  11. Karl says:

    @Scott and @Sam - the required road code change allowing cyclists to proceed on a “B” light is currently being consulted on, so should be law soon:


    “for no other reason than to bring Len Brown down. Shame.”

    Doloras, I suspect he won’t come back to posting here, whether or not we criticise him harshly or not. In any case, he has a different benefit from bashing buses - the Orakei / Remuera voters (specifically those who choose him) don’t use them much, so he probably feels he’s making himself visible in a (for him) positive way by championing their kind of attitude to PT.

  12. anthony says:


    Thanks for the image, i wasn’t understanding what it actually looks like.

    Damn, it couldn’t be more obvious…

  13. Doloras says:

    @Karl: but the Remuera buses are among the best performing in Auckland. Are you saying we should withdraw them and put the funding somewhere where we should appreciate them? ;-)

    Seriously, in Brewer’s previous incarnation as “Mayor of Newmarket” he loved the train station to death.

  14. Karl says:

    @Doloras, I have no idea whether the Remuera bus lanes are “best performing”. I have had some contrary comments in the sense that their introduction snarled up other traffic enough that buses actually had problems even reaching them from the east, so the journey time benefits were relatively limited in total. Teething problems maybe, or insufficient design (i.e. bus lanes not going far enough) to a part, but certainly they have/had some issues. To support more PT use, they are still worth it, don’t get me wrong.

    But what I was really pointing out was my perception that the people who vote for HIM (Brewer) are not bus users, and he knows it. The fact that there’s people in his ward who actually kinda like being treated seriously when riding a bus - he doesn’t seem to consider them worth more than a “I support bus lanes, BUT…” statement.

  15. Chris says:

    Sigh. What’s the news in this??

    It’s called a voluntary tax. I’ve no problem if people want to pay it - no skin off my nose.

    I have actually riden across on my bike a quite a number of times, and have observed what is happening.

    a) people from ‘outside’ the city i.e. mostly brown folk from south are driving across. I don’t think they can read - and I don’t blame them - the literacy levels down south are very poor. Often it is families going to the hospital.

    b) I’ve spoken to two tourists, telling them it was illegal. They were surprised so I pointed out the signs to them - they admitted they didn’t read them. I gave them both a bollocking.

    In regards to A - I suggest AkTransport hold community meetings down south to a) explain and b) teach signage. As for tourists - well I’ve no problem ticketing them. Word will soon get around.

    Remember - it’s a voluntary tax, not a fine.

  16. Rene says:

    I must say, until you have had a problem with this it doesnt affect you. My mother accidentally drove over this bridge in May 2011. She was going to the hospital from K’rd. Having not driven in the city for 20+ years, she wasnt aware that it was a bus lane. Ebven though its been on the news, people dont always pay attention too all of the news. The photo by @karl is an unobstructed view from right in front. If you are 3 cars back on K’rd then you cant see any signs until you are entering the bridge itself, by then its too late, especially if you arent looking for them.

    So I can understand how the mistake happens, elderly people that arent expecting it, as its always been “the way” as far as they are concerned, especially as it leads directly to Auckland Hospital. They should have a one chance system.


    Can you see the sign from here?

  17. Scott says:

    “Can you see the sign from here?” Yip, In the photo you link to I can see a red x on the overhead gantry, plus a bus lane sign on the bridge its self.

    Also to get there the driver must have driven under a giant overhead gantry with a pictorial of the intersection clearly showing the bus lane.

  18. Will says:

    I’m a tourist from the UK and just got this fine. I had no idea, didn’t see any signs (granted I didn’t look for them as have never seen this type timed road in Britain and it looked fairly average to me). Pretty pissed off about it. GPS took me right through it.

  19. jene says:

    Yes I got zapped. Admittedly I didn’t see the signs. I never go into this area but I was showing a tourist around the beautiful domain and decided to go into the city via the bridge. Suggestion re signs - having an illuminated light sign of a car with a cross through it and have it on in the day time. Have it above the lanes so you can see ahead before going onto the bridge. Such a pity cars can’t use the bridge because of its historical beauty too.

  20. Darryl says:

    And i will be getting one now too.
    Signs are atrocious and extremely poorly placed or visible.


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