KiwiRAP

Star Ratings

Star Rating a road is a proactive approach to road safety. It enables sections of road with a relatively high level of risk to be identified before a crash occurs. The Star Ratings will make drivers aware of the relative safety of the roads they use, as well as help identify roads that will benefit from safety improvements.

The degree of risk, or just how safe a road is, depends to an extent on whether built-in safety features have been incorporated into the road’s design. These include wide lanes, shoulders, and safety barriers which are known to reduce the impact and severity of a crash.

The safest roads are likely to be straight, divided, have good line-markings, wide lanes and sealed shoulders. Roadsides with no trees or ditches, and roads with few, if any, intersections are also deemed safer.

Comparatively, single or narrow lanes, undivided roads and unsealed shoulders are deemed the least safe. Tight curves in mountainous terrain, poor line markings and unforgiving roadside features such as trees, power poles and ditches also affect the safety rating.

Based on inspection of various design elements, the Star Rating provides an evaluation of the impact and severity those elements would have in a crash scenario.

New Zealand has been split into 15 regions for Star Rating purposes. Four Star Rating maps have been produced for the North Island and two maps for the South Island.

Related Links