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Barry Drive bus lane still mostly bus lane.

By 14 December 2012 27

I’m not usually one for ranting, but after a recent attempted vehicular collision on the road, I’ve got a bone to pick about the Barry Drive bus lane.

At the moment, roadworks have removed the turning lane from use at the Barry Dr/Clunies Ross St. A sign about 250m from the intersection advises motorists that they can enter the bus lane, presumably to relieve congestion associated with (temporarily) reducing the number of lanes.

However, some motorists have taken to entering the bus lane significantly earlier – as far away as 1.8km – and often from a gridlock stop. Not only does this break the law (bus lane remains a bus lane until another sign ends it), but it puts at risk lawful users of the bus lane – such as the blue Merc SUV that attempted to cozily share the lane with my motorbike the other morning saved only by my excellent brakes. It is very fortunate, because I may have scratched the passenger door. Or died. I’m told that cars racing down the bus lane are also a massive risk for people turning toward Dryandra St.

This seems like a good place for police to undertake some decent policing that actually keeps the road a little safer. Discuss.

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27 Responses to Barry Drive bus lane still mostly bus lane.
#1
buzz8194:35 pm, 14 Dec 12

I say get rid of the bus lane or the exemption for motorcyclists, both will also remove this problem occurring to you.

#2
Innovation7:06 pm, 14 Dec 12

buzz819 said :

I say get rid of the bus lane or the exemption for motorcyclists, both will also remove this problem occurring to you.

I agree. I ride a bike but I don’t understand why bikes (of all persuasions) are allowed in the bus lane but not certain other vehicles. The Government needs to make up their mind about what these special use lanes should be used for.

#3
screaming banshee8:09 pm, 14 Dec 12

Last time I drove through there the sign indicated that the bus lane was open to all, to me that reads the entire bus lane….not just part of it.

#4
Spykler10:55 pm, 14 Dec 12

Innovation said :

buzz819 said :

I say get rid of the bus lane or the exemption for motorcyclists, both will also remove this problem occurring to you.

I agree. I ride a bike but I don’t understand why bikes (of all persuasions) are allowed in the bus lane but not certain other vehicles. The Government needs to make up their mind about what these special use lanes should be used for.

Agreed, why open it for bikes when lane splitting gets u through banked up traffic just as fast..Have ridden a bike for years and have never had an issue splitting through 8am Canberra traffic.

#5
arescarti4211:34 pm, 14 Dec 12

Spykler said :

Agreed, why open it for bikes when lane splitting gets u through banked up traffic just as fast..Have ridden a bike for years and have never had an issue splitting through 8am Canberra traffic.

Perhaps because lane splitting is illegal?

#6
KeenGolfer7:31 am, 15 Dec 12

Innovation said :

I agree. I ride a bike but I don’t understand why bikes (of all persuasions) are allowed in the bus lane but not certain other vehicles. The Government needs to make up their mind about what these special use lanes should be used for.

The have made up their mind – buses, taxis, hire cars, motorcycles and emergency vehicles can use bus lanes – not too difficult to understand.

Less congestion and better traffic flow, less emissions, and much safer for motorbikes when there’s traffic. Are you upset that you’re stuck in the traffic while the motorbike happily sails past in the bus lane?

#7
KeenGolfer7:32 am, 15 Dec 12

arescarti42 said :

Perhaps because lane splitting is illegal?

Care to show me the legislation that says “lane splitting” or “lane filtering” is illegal?

#8
milkman8:11 am, 15 Dec 12

arescarti42 said :

Spykler said :

Agreed, why open it for bikes when lane splitting gets u through banked up traffic just as fast..Have ridden a bike for years and have never had an issue splitting through 8am Canberra traffic.

Perhaps because lane splitting is illegal?

Maybe if we had some cops on the roads people wouldn’t be so unconcerned about the rules.

#9
ScienceRules8:20 am, 15 Dec 12

I’ve never understood why busses get special privilege at traffic lights either. What is the point of letting a slow moving bus go through on the “B” signal so the rest of the traffic can queue behind them and then bank up when they stop?

#10
Pork Hunt9:48 am, 15 Dec 12

ScienceRules said :

I’ve never understood why busses get special privilege at traffic lights either. What is the point of letting a slow moving bus go through on the “B” signal so the rest of the traffic can queue behind them and then bank up when they stop?

It’s about the bus, not the other drivers…

#11
Martlark11:12 am, 15 Dec 12

ScienceRules said :

I’ve never understood why busses get special privilege at traffic lights either. What is the point of letting a slow moving bus go through on the “B” signal so the rest of the traffic can queue behind them and then bank up when they stop?

It’s so the bus gets in front and all the traffic banks up behind when they stop. Busses are #1 on the road my friend.

#12
switch12:55 pm, 15 Dec 12

Martlark said :

It’s so the bus gets in front and all the traffic banks up behind when they stop. Busses are #1 on the road my friend.

Dem’s fightin’ words, my friend. Anyone can see that cyclists are more important than busses in this town.

#13
what_the3:25 pm, 15 Dec 12

KeenGolfer said :

Innovation said :

I agree. I ride a bike but I don’t understand why bikes (of all persuasions) are allowed in the bus lane but not certain other vehicles. The Government needs to make up their mind about what these special use lanes should be used for.

The have made up their mind – buses, taxis, hire cars, motorcycles and emergency vehicles can use bus lanes – not too difficult to understand.

Less congestion and better traffic flow, less emissions, and much safer for motorbikes when there’s traffic. Are you upset that you’re stuck in the traffic while the motorbike happily sails past in the bus lane?

Not all bus lanes as it turns out! Found that out when I got pulled over one time. Apparently there’s bus lanes and bus only lanes. Didn’t realise there were different types, but he let me off with a warning cause he even had to check as he wasn’t sure!

But yes, people really do get that upset by motorcycles passing them…petty I know.

#14
Innovation3:37 pm, 15 Dec 12

KeenGolfer said :

Innovation said :

I agree. I ride a bike but I don’t understand why bikes (of all persuasions) are allowed in the bus lane but not certain other vehicles. The Government needs to make up their mind about what these special use lanes should be used for.

The have made up their mind – buses, taxis, hire cars, motorcycles and emergency vehicles can use bus lanes – not too difficult to understand.

Less congestion and better traffic flow, less emissions, and much safer for motorbikes when there’s traffic. Are you upset that you’re stuck in the traffic while the motorbike happily sails past in the bus lane?

Perhaps you need to read my post again. I actually ride a bike.

But even though there are a variety of special purpose lanes around town no-one seems to know the reason for any of the designations. For example, if it’s to allow fast public transport why let motorbikes (and especially low powered/slow motorbikes) and empty taxis or out of service buses in the lanes? If it’s to promote sustainable transport why allow huge petrol guzzling single rider motorbikes and not allow multi occupant passenger cars?

#15
bd844:00 pm, 15 Dec 12

KeenGolfer said :

arescarti42 said :

Perhaps because lane splitting is illegal?

Care to show me the legislation that says “lane splitting” or “lane filtering” is illegal?

Try looking at the sections of the road rules about requiring to overtake in a safe manner, not to the left, or in bike lanes, and that only one vehicle is to occupy the same space within a lane.

Having said that, TAMS has not been clear about which part of the bus lane is open to traffic, whether all or just part of it and which part of it. They’ve been advertising it as the lane on Barry dr is open to all traffic, therefore I can understand why people are driving along it from the start. No point in ranting when you don’t actually know yourself if what you’re saying is correct.

#16
KeenGolfer5:10 pm, 15 Dec 12

bd84 said :

KeenGolfer said :

arescarti42 said :

Perhaps because lane splitting is illegal?

Care to show me the legislation that says “lane splitting” or “lane filtering” is illegal?

Try looking at the sections of the road rules about requiring to overtake in a safe manner, not to the left, or in bike lanes, and that only one vehicle is to occupy the same space within a lane.

Having said that, TAMS has not been clear about which part of the bus lane is open to traffic, whether all or just part of it and which part of it. They’ve been advertising it as the lane on Barry dr is open to all traffic, therefore I can understand why people are driving along it from the start. No point in ranting when you don’t actually know yourself if what you’re saying is correct.

I know a thing or two about the road rules. I said show me where lane splitting or filter is illegal – the answer is there’s no references to these practices in any road rules. There are road rules that may be broken when splitting or filtering, but they are not explicitly illegal.

#17
milkman7:53 pm, 15 Dec 12

bd84 said :

Try looking at the sections of the road rules about requiring to overtake in a safe manner, not to the left, or in bike lanes, and that only one vehicle is to occupy the same space within a lane.

I regularly overtake people on the left – those people who insist on driving below the speed limit but won’t move out of the right lane.

#18
Spykler8:56 pm, 15 Dec 12

KeenGolfer said :

bd84 said :

KeenGolfer said :

arescarti42 said :

Perhaps because lane splitting is illegal?

Care to show me the legislation that says “lane splitting” or “lane filtering” is illegal?

Try looking at the sections of the road rules about requiring to overtake in a safe manner, not to the left, or in bike lanes, and that only one vehicle is to occupy the same space within a lane.

Having said that, TAMS has not been clear about which part of the bus lane is open to traffic, whether all or just part of it and which part of it. They’ve been advertising it as the lane on Barry dr is open to all traffic, therefore I can understand why people are driving along it from the start. No point in ranting when you don’t actually know yourself if what you’re saying is correct.

I know a thing or two about the road rules. I said show me where lane splitting or filter is illegal – the answer is there’s no references to these practices in any road rules. There are road rules that may be broken when splitting or filtering, but they are not explicitly illegal.

Correct- there is no specific definition in any Australian road rules guide concerning lane-splitting, and until there is one I will happily continue to follow the practice.

#19
melon12349:54 pm, 15 Dec 12

milkman said :

I regularly overtake people on the left – those people who insist on driving below the speed limit but won’t move out of the right lane.

There’s nothing wrong with that.

The legislation specifies that you must not overtake a vehicle to the left of the vehicle, unless:
(a) the driver is driving on a multi-lane road and the vehicle can be safely overtaken in a marked lane to the left of the vehicle; or
(b) the vehicle is turning right or making a U–turn from the centre of the road, and is giving a right change of direction signal and it is safe to overtake to the left of the vehicle; or
(c) the vehicle is stationary and it is safe to overtake to the left of the vehicle.

Whilst the preference remains to overtaking on the right, nothing wrong with overtaking on the left of a multi lane road.

#20
gtlloyd10:25 pm, 16 Dec 12

buzz819 said :

I say get rid of the bus lane or the exemption for motorcyclists, both will also remove this problem occurring to you.

Bus lanes exist for a reason. The exemption for motorcycles and taxis is a fact of law (and presumably also for reasons, which I won’t pretend to know). Your suggestion is not a reasonable solution to a problem.

screaming banshee said :

Last time I drove through there the sign indicated that the bus lane was open to all, to me that reads the entire bus lane….not just part of it.

The sign reads “Bus lane open to general traffic”. I make the assumption that if the sign was meant for the entire bus lane, it would be at the beginning of the bus lane (and indeed there is an un-used portable electronic sign set up 100m before the bus lane begins at the Belconnen Way/Barry Drive intersection – which has been used to advise of night works closing Barry Dr). Just as knowing a 100km/h sign will appear in a few kilometres does not mean you can go 100km/h now, I believe it’s the most sensible interpretation that a “Bus lane open” sign does not apply before you can see it (or even know that it continues to be in place).

KeenGolfer said :

Care to show me the legislation that says “lane splitting” or “lane filtering” is illegal?

Lane splitting is considered a breach of the following road rules:
ARR146(1) – Drivers on a multi-lane road must travel entirely within a single lane
ARR144 – Drivers must keep a safe distance when overtaking
ARR141 – Drivers must not overtake to the left of a vehicle
These appear on pages 137 (pdf 162), 135 (pdf 160) and 133 (pdf 158) of the current ACT version of the Australian Road Rules (link 1) respectively. The specific rules were identified by the National Transport Commission (link 2) as those that make lane filtering illegal (amongst other rules about traffic lights).

(1) http://www.legislation.act.gov.au/ni/2010-113/current/pdf/2010-113.pdf
(2) http://www.ntc.gov.au/DocView.aspx?documentid=01245

#21
screaming banshee11:14 pm, 16 Dec 12

Your right it makes much more sense to cue up in traffic waiting to pass the magic line before you can pull in front of vehicles travelling at speed that are already using the lane.

Not travelling that way too often I’m just going to assume that in doing so you would be crossing a solid white line…such is the way bus lanes are usually demarcated.

In a similar fashion if you are turning left from flemington rd at epic, you are permitted to enter the bus lane anywhere it is broken in order to perform the upcoming turn. The purpose of the bus lane there is to provide unhindered passage for the bus to the intersection. The fact that traffic doesn’t cue in that lane allows anyone turning left to continue through and they don’t delay the bus.

#22
screaming banshee11:27 pm, 16 Dec 12

Please note that it does not say from the point at which gtloyd thinks it should be…it says bus lane.

http://www.cmd.act.gov.au/open_government/inform/act_government_media_releases/tamsd/2012/11/temporary_traffic_changes_on_barry_drive

To be honest mate I’m disappointed, your a bloody motorcyclist and this sort thing is basic road craft, reading this again you were approaching the back of stopped traffic and were surprised? when all of a sudden a vehicle entered your space. It’s like passing a side street or riding on a multi lane road, always maintain a position which gives you the maximum possible safety zone and predict what the morons in their luxurious 3 bedroom suv’s are going to do….and never ever sit in a blind spot.

#23
gtlloyd6:49 am, 17 Dec 12

screaming banshee said :

Please note that it does not say from the point at which gtloyd thinks it should be…it says bus lane.

http://www.cmd.act.gov.au/open_government/inform/act_government_media_releases/tamsd/2012/11/temporary_traffic_changes_on_barry_drive

To be honest mate I’m disappointed, your a bloody motorcyclist and this sort thing is basic road craft, reading this again you were approaching the back of stopped traffic and were surprised? when all of a sudden a vehicle entered your space. It’s like passing a side street or riding on a multi lane road, always maintain a position which gives you the maximum possible safety zone and predict what the morons in their luxurious 3 bedroom suv’s are going to do….and never ever sit in a blind spot.

As I’ve previously said, I’m pretty surprised that people think that a road sign applies before you can actually see it, sloppy media release drafting notwithstanding.

I’ve also come unscathed out of that stretch of road after hundreds of mornings of banked up traffic so my ability to watch and avoid is OK, and I’m quite cautious in traffic. I’m ranting mostly about the risky activity caused by willful misinterpretation of road rules to suit people’s personal convenience. I am seeing a lot of it in the comments here too.

#24
KeenGolfer8:35 am, 17 Dec 12

gtlloyd said :

Lane splitting is considered a breach of the following road rules:
ARR146(1) – Drivers on a multi-lane road must travel entirely within a single lane
ARR144 – Drivers must keep a safe distance when overtaking
ARR141 – Drivers must not overtake to the left of a vehicle
These appear on pages 137 (pdf 162), 135 (pdf 160) and 133 (pdf 158) of the current ACT version of the Australian Road Rules (link 1) respectively. The specific rules were identified by the National Transport Commission (link 2) as those that make lane filtering illegal (amongst other rules about traffic lights).

(1) http://www.legislation.act.gov.au/ni/2010-113/current/pdf/2010-113.pdf
(2) http://www.ntc.gov.au/DocView.aspx?documentid=01245

I am well aware of the other road rules that *may* come into application. My point being (again) there are no specific road rules against the practice – the ARR do not say:

Rule X: The rider of a motorcycle must not:
(a) Overtake another vehicle between between two lanes of traffic, whether the traffic is moving or not.

Your link to the ARR requires further clarification to be correct. The ARR are incorporated into ACT law wholus-bolus but then they make a large number of changes to the ARR. Whereas other states modify the actual ARR itself, we have all our changes to the ARR in the Road Transport (Safety and Traffic Management) Regulation 2000. So if you really want to know what the road rules are in the ACT you need to read the NTC’s version of the ARR and also the regulation with all our ACT specific ARR changes.

#25
Erg09:39 am, 17 Dec 12

KeenGolfer said :

Your link to the ARR requires further clarification to be correct. The ARR are incorporated into ACT law wholus-bolus but then they make a large number of changes to the ARR. Whereas other states modify the actual ARR itself, we have all our changes to the ARR in the Road Transport (Safety and Traffic Management) Regulation 2000. So if you really want to know what the road rules are in the ACT you need to read the NTC’s version of the ARR and also the regulation with all our ACT specific ARR changes.

So your argument is that it’s ok for you to do it because they haven’t done a good enough job (in your eyes) of making it illegal?

#26
KeenGolfer10:24 am, 17 Dec 12

Erg0 said :

So your argument is that it’s ok for you to do it because they haven’t done a good enough job (in your eyes) of making it illegal?

Please show me where I’ve said it’s ok to do it. I haven’t stated my personal opinion, only what the law says. Many people with little or no knowledge of the law state filtering or splitting is illegal – it isn’t. However, you can easily break other road rules whilst doing it. If you are careful you can do it and not break road rules. It’s not hard to understand.

#27
dtc11:50 am, 17 Dec 12

Soooo, now that we have descended into a motorbike vs car ‘debate’, anyone know when the roadworks are due to finish? The original plan was some time ago and the bike lanes on Marcus Clarke st to be finished by Christmas; the bike lanes look a few weeks away (hopefully – for my selfish sake – the work gets done over the holidays).

And those new lights at Marcus Clarke/Rudd St – can see some long traffic jams for people turning right from Barry Drive into Marcus Clarke when the lights arent synched.

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