Skip to content Skip to main navigation

News

Avani Terraces - Greenway
Life is looking up

Monaro Highway Line Marking, Sgt Bungers, can you help?

By KB1971 - 16 December 2012 10

A while ago my wife and I each had a near miss head on accident with the same car while travelling on the Monaro Highway.

We were in saparate cars travelling to Royalla, the traffic was light & we were not in a hurry. My wife was a minute ahead & out of sight. As I left the 80 zone at the bottom of the hill I popped into the middle lane to pass a car near the old Tuggeranong Lookout, the next corner is a blind left hander. I thought to myself “I might head back to the left lane now” as I dont like negotiating that bit of road in the middle lane as there is nowhere to go if something happens.

I had no sooner turned off my indicator when a blue Commodore station wagon came around the corner on the wrong side of the road (heading down the hill) in the middle lane (the overtaking lane for the southbound traffic). If I had stayed there I would have certainly had a head on accident with this bloke. I managed to get a flash of the lights away & the last I saw of him he indicated & moved left again.

When I arrived at Royalla I asked my wife if she saw him & she had to actually take evasive action to miss him, she was passing a horse float at the time & nearly hit it to avoid numnuts the Commodore.

Anyway, I have seen this behavoir on this stretch of road before, we follwed a semi trailer northbound doing the same thing on the same corner one day while passing a slower vehicle.

My concern is that the line marking is confusing. Drivers heading south have free reign of the over taking lanes, its there for them to overtake the slower traffic on the long hill. The northbound traffic has a mix if broken & unbroken lines & are able to pass when clear. This to me is the issue as many city drivers are not taught the rules on passing nor do they get to practice the skill on country roads. People who are heading north seem to misunderstand the fact that they have to give way to the traffic heading up the hill before passing.

I think the northbound lanes should be marked with unbroken lines all the way down the hill with ripple strips to warn people that they cannot pass. From memory, most of the overtaking lane from there to Cooma that has a corner or a blind spot is such as this one marked this way (without the ripple strips).

Sgt Bungers, are you able to look into this as part of your work?

What’s Your opinion?


Post a comment
Please login to post your comments, or connect with
10 Responses to
Monaro Highway Line Marking, Sgt Bungers, can you help?
Sgt.Bungers 12:30 pm 18 Dec 12

KB1971 said :

This bit of road is not new to me, I moved here from the Sapphire Cost in 1991 and travelled it with my parents and by myself for 11 years before that so I am very familiar with the road.

I have followed many heavy vehicles down that hill and I have never seen them slow down and use lower gears nor is there a requirement for it as the gradient is slight and there is a fairly large flat section at the bottom.

Anyway, I am happy to catch up with you to discuss further if you like and show you the sections of road under question.

Remarkably, the information I could find on centre line markings within the Australian Standards seemed to be very “pro-overtaking”. The language of the standard suggested that overtaking on the wrong side of the road should generally be allowed, and only prohibited where not safe.

With today’s safety conscious culture, I would’ve thought that the tone of such a standard would be the other way around… with overtaking generally not allowed, and only allowed where safe.

I have to be careful with what I reproduce on this forum as Australian Standards documents are copyrighted by Standards Australia. Though you have access to SAI Global through a corporate or educational institution account, the standard I’m referring to is AS1742.2, section 5.3.2 and 5.3.3.

If I am correct in my understanding that standards do in fact lean on “pro-overtaking” opportunities, then the centre/barrier markings on this hill may well fall within all guidelines as they are.

Common sense could suggest this could lead to problems… but that never comes into play these days 🙂

Regardless, as someone who uses the road often, if you believe there’s a problem your best bet may be to forward your concern onto the A.C.T Gov via their fix my street website. My understanding is that you should receive a response to your enquiry within 10 business days if you log it via that site. Hold on to the reference number that you’ll receive when you submit the query so that you can follow it up later on if you don’t hear back.

Conan of Cooma 3:50 pm 17 Dec 12

dtc said :

I have to say I can’t stand people who overtake using the overtaking lane for drivers going in the other direction (if that makes sense). So if the overtaking lane is there for southbound drivers, northbound should not use it at all or only use if if there are no cars travelling north – not just no cars in the overtaking lane, but no cars at all travelling north in either lane.

Because southbound drivers will treat the overtaking lane as part of ‘their’ road and change lanes without paying attention to cars coming the other way (to cut a corner, perhaps, or swerve around a dead animal). And will usually look behind them before overtaking another southbound car, but never consider the car coming the other way or think that the car coming the other way will move over into the overtaking lane.

In that case – You would love driving this hill!

dtc 11:40 am 17 Dec 12

I have to say I can’t stand people who overtake using the overtaking lane for drivers going in the other direction (if that makes sense). So if the overtaking lane is there for southbound drivers, northbound should not use it at all or only use if if there are no cars travelling north – not just no cars in the overtaking lane, but no cars at all travelling north in either lane.

Because southbound drivers will treat the overtaking lane as part of ‘their’ road and change lanes without paying attention to cars coming the other way (to cut a corner, perhaps, or swerve around a dead animal). And will usually look behind them before overtaking another southbound car, but never consider the car coming the other way or think that the car coming the other way will move over into the overtaking lane.

Conan of Cooma 10:48 am 17 Dec 12

Sgt.Bungers said :

Sounds utterly terrifying. I’m glad you weren’t involved in that drivers inevitable “accident”.

I have not read into any national standards or guidelines regarding overtaking lanes, I’ll see if I can dig some up.

My knee jerk response is simply that given it’s a long downhill stretch with a duplicated section of the Monaro quickly approaching near Richardson, why is it necessary for northbound traffic to be provided with overtaking “opportunities” at that point?

Even if someone encountered another road user averaging as slow as 60 km/h for that entire stretch, waiting until the properly duplicated section would add no more than 2 minutes to a trip.

Are there any truckies here who could let me know if this long downhill stretch requires particularly low speed with heavy vehicles? Would a slow lane be necessary or helpful here?

Trucks heading North absolutely FLY down the first two stretches, and then slow down dramatically for the second bend. It is not unusual to be going 60 when you reach the bottom stretch. That said, these are the trucks I experience, and they tend to be logging trucks from Bombala and quarry trucks from Williamsdale. The quarry trucks from Williamsdale are a horror, as everyone knows how slow they go when they get to Calwell (and it’s 50/50 which way they go, towards Tuggers or Hume).

OP – If you want to know the ‘why’ of it, head out to Royalla and query the residents. It happens in reverse in the afternoons, you get tradie clowns and P plater girls with their pink flair all flying up the hill, overtaking willy nilly, only to make it to the Royalla turn off 6 seconds before the people they overtook. Old Cooma Road residents are a little better, but not much. Count yourself lucky you don’t have to contend with them pulling out 20 metres in front of you in the mornings when you’re doing 100KM on the way to work.

KB1971 10:20 am 17 Dec 12

Sgt.Bungers said :

Sounds utterly terrifying. I’m glad you weren’t involved in that drivers inevitable “accident”.

I have not read into any national standards or guidelines regarding overtaking lanes, I’ll see if I can dig some up.

My knee jerk response is simply that given it’s a long downhill stretch with a duplicated section of the Monaro quickly approaching near Richardson, why is it necessary for northbound traffic to be provided with overtaking “opportunities” at that point?

Even if someone encountered another road user averaging as slow as 60 km/h for that entire stretch, waiting until the properly duplicated section would add no more than 2 minutes to a trip.

Are there any truckies here who could let me know if this long downhill stretch requires particularly low speed with heavy vehicles? Would a slow lane be necessary or helpful here?

This bit of road is not new to me, I moved here from the Sapphire Cost in 1991 and traveled it with my parents and by myself for 11 years before that so I am very familiar with the road.

I have followed many heavy vehicles down that hill and I have never seen them slow down and use lower gears nor is there a requirement for it as the gradient is slight and there is a fairly large flat section at the bottom.

Anyway, I am happy to catch up with you to discuss further if you like and show you the sections of road under question.

thebrownstreak69 10:19 am 17 Dec 12

Sgt.Bungers said :

My knee jerk response is simply that given it’s a long downhill stretch with a duplicated section of the Monaro quickly approaching near Richardson, why is it necessary for northbound traffic to be provided with overtaking “opportunities” at that point?

Even if someone encountered another road user averaging as slow as 60 km/h for that entire stretch, waiting until the properly duplicated section would add no more than 2 minutes to a trip.

+1. It’s only a couple of minutes and the traffic generally runs along at 90+km/h downhill anyway. Some patience is all that’s needed. Sadly, that road with winter traffic sees some of the silliest driving ever.

Holden Caulfield 10:06 am 17 Dec 12

The situation, as described, is pretty clear to me and I agree with your interpretation of who has right of way.

Seems to me there could be something in the theory that the more widespread use of dual carriageway is making drivers ill-prepared for anything approaching old skool country driving.

Either that or the Commodore driver was just being a wanker.

Actually, plenty of drivers can’t manage traffic properly on a dual carriageway (see Federal/Hume Hwys) so I guess it’s not really a surprise if they can’t manage the situation you described.

KB1971 9:58 am 17 Dec 12

Conan of Cooma said :

After the Old Cooma Road and Royalla turn offs you get about 10% of the traffic problems. Unless it’s winter!

Agree.

Sgt.Bungers 9:45 am 17 Dec 12

Sounds utterly terrifying. I’m glad you weren’t involved in that drivers inevitable “accident”.

I have not read into any national standards or guidelines regarding overtaking lanes, I’ll see if I can dig some up.

My knee jerk response is simply that given it’s a long downhill stretch with a duplicated section of the Monaro quickly approaching near Richardson, why is it necessary for northbound traffic to be provided with overtaking “opportunities” at that point?

Even if someone encountered another road user averaging as slow as 60 km/h for that entire stretch, waiting until the properly duplicated section would add no more than 2 minutes to a trip.

Are there any truckies here who could let me know if this long downhill stretch requires particularly low speed with heavy vehicles? Would a slow lane be necessary or helpful here?

Conan of Cooma 8:31 am 17 Dec 12

After the Old Cooma Road and Royalla turn offs you get about 10% of the traffic problems. Unless it’s winter!

Related Articles

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Top
Copyright © 2017 Riot ACT Holdings Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.
www.the-riotact.com | www.b2bmagazine.com.au | www.thisiscanberra.com

Search across the site