He’s working to make our roads safer

Tuesday October 03, 2017 Written by Published in Local
Henry Napa and son Temana (right) give a big thumbs-up to the launching of the first speed camera sign on the island in Arorangi yesterday morning. He is joined by local Puaikura Community Sergeant, Apolo Miria, who is looking forward to seeing more responsible drivers on the road thanks to Napa’s hard work. 17100216 Henry Napa and son Temana (right) give a big thumbs-up to the launching of the first speed camera sign on the island in Arorangi yesterday morning. He is joined by local Puaikura Community Sergeant, Apolo Miria, who is looking forward to seeing more responsible drivers on the road thanks to Napa’s hard work. 17100216

A genuine community champion, would be an accurate description of Henry Napa.

 

And it’s an even more appropriate description now that he has delivered a project that aims to change driver awareness and attitudes across the roads of Rarotonga.

Napa, who works in the fire and safety industry, first had the inspiration to set up speed camera signs around the island two years ago.

A few months later he got a proposal going under the India Grants programme. And, thanks to aid assistance received from the government of India earlier this year, totaling $140,000, Napa has been able to access the latest speed camera equipment.

The speed camera situated outside the Church of the Latter-Day Saints in Arorangi is the first of 12 solar-powered cameras that will be rolled out in coming months.

Napa, who has worked closely with the Police Service and government on the project, is currently finalising locations, and at this stage is looking at four in Arorangi, and four around Avarua township, with the rest spread around the remainder “at-risk” areas of the island.

He thought the measure was necessary following three motorcycle fatalities that had occurred in the Arorangi area over the years, he said.

Napa hopes the cameras will help drivers become more aware of their speed and slow down if needed.

The signs are commonly used around the world and are strategically placed at high risk spots to warn motorists about their speed. Studies also prove that radar speed signs work, improving driver behaviour by 80 per cent or more. The signs are often referred to as “traffic calming” devices, as they are designed to encourage drivers to slow down rather than penalise them.

“Anything below 40 kilometres (an hour) won’t flash up, but over that speed it will register a driver’s speed – and at 59 kilometres it will also say, slow down,” Napa said.

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