RTA to review highway roundabout

THE Roads and Traffic Authority will review the Pacific Highway roundabout at the city’s southern entrance following yet another truck roll-over this week.

The semi-trailer, driven by a 35-year-old truckie, careered out of control on the Englands Road/Stadium Drive intersection at 1.20am on Monday.

It’s an area notorious for fresh skidmarks on the road almost weekly and the RTA accident figures show there have been 16 tow-away crashes over the past four years.

One accident proved fatal while another five resulted in injuries.

In some of these cases drivers failed to see or simply ignored the 60km/h speed limit running off the road or colliding with other vehicles on the busy intersection.

An RTA spokesman said work has already been carried out to improve signage particularly for heavy vehicle drivers in the area.

A safety review is also under way to improve safety and ways to reduce the approach speed of vehicles into the roundabout. One suggestion has been the installation of “rubble lines”, the speed limit warning lines, which have proven effective in slowing Pacific Highway traffic at Hexham.

Member for Coffs Harbour Andrew Fraser has also called for an urgent redesign of the roundabout.

“This roundabout has always been a problem. It is too big, the road is cambered the wrong way and this is not the first time a semi-trailer has failed to negotiate the roundabout,” Mr Fraser said.

“I believe the RTA needs to urgently re-design the roundabout. “In addition to the poor camber of the road, the vegetation in the middle of the roundabout, and also on approaching arterial roads, is very thick and creates a sight hazard for motorists.”

He suggested that Isles Drive could be greater utilised and that England’s Road could be closed east bound towards the Pacific Highway.

“Unless urgent action is taken to re-design the roundabout, I believe it is only a matter of time before there is a very serious, possibly fatal accident, at the site,” he said.

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