What to do when you need to stop traffic

Any person or organisation carrying out work or other activities on Southland District Council roads is required to prepare and submit a Traffic Management Plan (TMP).

This includes any contractors you engage to do work on the road corridor. They must have authorisation, a traffic management plan and an appropriately qualified person onsite.

Some examples of the kind of roadside work requiring a traffic management plan are:

  • tree felling;
  • ditch cleaning;
  • installing an accessway;
  • shelterbelt trimming;
  • debris clearing.

A Traffic Management Plan is a document showing how an activity in the road will be carried out safely and efficiently.

Please refer to WorkSafe’s website to find your health and safety responsibilities under the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015

The standards for temporary traffic management are set out in the Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) Code of Practice for Temporary Traffic Management. These standards are compulsory for all those who want to do work on the road.

Southland District Council cannot approve traffic management plans on the NZTA network. NZTA controls traffic management on the highway network. This is the network of roads that are numbered State Highway 1, 6, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98 and 99 in the Southland area.

Check the NZTA website for more information. We suggest Mobile Road to find route position and annual average daily traffic counts.

What is a Traffic Management Plan (TMP)?

A Traffic Management Plan is a document showing how an activity in the road corridor will be carried out safely and efficiently. This means safely for workers and those travelling through the site, in a way that minimises disruption to the travelling public.

A Traffic Management Plan includes details regarding when the work is planned, contact details of who is doing the work and who is responsible for the traffic management and temporary speed limits. It will also include diagrams showing sign placement.

When do I need a TMP?

A Traffic Management Plan is required whenever the normal operating conditions of the road will be changed. Worksites on the road are covered by the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015. This means that those doing work must provide temporary traffic management, and the Traffic Management Plan must be carried out in accordance with the Code of Practice for Temporary Traffic Management.

Traffic management plans are needed for work within the road, events in the road and also for work and events near the road which affect traffic. Roads include footpaths, berms, cycle lanes as well as the carriageway. There are companies that provide traffic management services and training. These can be found by searching online.

Southland District Council staff audit temporary traffic management sites in Southland. If there is no traffic management, or if it is inadequate or dangerous, Southland District Council will require you to cease work and/or issue a notice of non-conformance to the person or the company involved.

Who can create a TMP?

Traffic management plans must be created by someone with the relevant Waka Kotahi NZTA qualification. As of 1 January 2021 this will be a practising temporary traffic management planner (TTMP).

How do I submit a plan?

Traffic management plans need to be submitted as a single PDF through MyWorksites alongside your corridor access request. Please note that a Traffic Management Plan does not replace a Corridor Access Request, if a Corridor Access Request is required.

Please feel free to refer to the MyWorksites FAQ page for any questions regarding the application process.

How long does approval take?

We need all relevant information, time to check that you have co-ordinated your site with other worksites and we also need time to check the details of the Traffic Management Plan in order for us to process it. The time limits set out below are from the Code of Practice for Temporary Traffic Management. These vary according to the type of activity you are planning.

Site-specific TMP's

  • Must be submitted no later than 10 working days prior to the work commencing.

Event TMP's

  • Must be submitted no later than 21 days (note this is 52 days if a road closure is proposed)

Generic notifications (for approved contractors)

  • Must be submitted no later than 1 working day prior to intended work, or as otherwise advised.

Road closures

  • If you are having an event requiring some or all of a road to be closed temporarily, you need to register your event at least 52 days prior to the event date by contacting Southland District Council.

Road closures also require an application form to be submitted with your Traffic Management Plan. An advertisement will be placed in the Southland Express two weeks prior to the event at the event organisers’ cost.

Event organisers are responsible for contacting every affected person within proposed road closure areas and getting their signature of approval. Should someone object to the proposed road closure then the event organiser must try to resolve the objection. This should be completed in your Corridor Access Request through MyWorksites

Your application will be returned to you if it is:

  • Lacking in detail
  • is late
  • does not include evidence of consultation with affected parties, such as bus services, property owners, refuse and recycling collection
  • does not include accurate route positions for temporary speed limits. These are needed to be enforceable.
  • not compliant with the Code of Practice for Temporary Traffic Management (CoPTTM).

Frequently asked questions

Traffic management plans are required for all activities that vary the normal operating conditions of a road (this includes road, footpath, berm) as well as activities outside the road reserve that may affect the road.


It’s not just vehicle traffic you need to think about, it’s all road users – cyclists, pedestrians, traffic and workers. Think about what risks you may be putting road users at and how you can mitigate against these risks. It is an extension to your health and safety plan. You may have legal obligations under the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015

A person can get injured or killed in seconds if you do not have the appropriate safety measures in place.

A qualified site traffic management supervisor (STMS) can submit a Traffic Management Plan. However, as of 1 January 2021 there are changes coming with Code of Practice for Temporary Traffic Management (CoPTTM) training that will require additional training to write and submit a Traffic Management Plan. Alternatively, there are qualified traffic management providers that will do this for you.

All the information boxes on the current form must be filled out. There is a template guide on the CoPTTM website

You also need layout diagrams. Layout diagrams are expected as part of the application and must show:

  • What signs and other traffic management devices will be used
  • where the various devices (with dimensions) will be set out
  • a site drawing that reflects the road layout in the location.

Layout diagrams are available to download from the CoPTTM website. Southland District Council does not accept hand-drawn or redrawn diagrams.

Traffic management plans with road closures will need to be submitted at least 52 days prior to works as it needs to be advertised. A Corridor Access Request application form needs to be submitted with the Traffic Management Plan and affected persons must be notified. The forms can be sent to sdc@southlanddc.govt.nz

For co-ordination purposes and to meet CoPTTM requirements, Traffic Management Plans must be submitted at least five days prior to work starting. If a road closure is involved, then it must be submitted at least 52 days prior so it can be advertised.


The road controlling authority. Normally this is the local council (Southland District Council) or Waka Kotahi NZTA.

A traffic management co-ordinator appointed by the road controlling authority, in this case Southland District Council. The TMC checks that the Traffic Management Plan meets Code of Practice for Temporary Traffic Management.


Only the TMC or a person delegated by the road controlling authority (Southland District Council).


This will need to be reviewed by the TMC as there are peak traffic roads that may have time restrictions. This will also apply if you are near a school or early learning centre. You must adhere to the construction noise standard NZS 6803 1999.


No, these must be submitted to Waka Kotahi.


Yes. An attended site must have a Traffic Management Plan on site at all times.


Affected persons may require consultation including but not limited to emergency services, adjacent property owners and businesses.