Repairs required for lanes

ISSUES: Augusta Highway overtaking lanes will require further repairs, which could result in temporary closure.
ISSUES: Augusta Highway overtaking lanes will require further repairs, which could result in temporary closure.

The trouble-plagued overtaking lanes between Whyalla and Port Augusta are not up to scratch, and further repairs which could result in a temporary closure of the lanes are required.

These were findings from an inspection of the recently-constructed lanes by the Department of Planning, Transport and Industry.

Transport Minister Stephan Knoll recently confirmed, in a letter to Member for Giles Eddie Hughes, that a DPTI inspection had ‘confirmed that the quality of works were not satisfactory’ and ‘repairs will be undertaken which may include a temporary closure’.

“Please be assured that following completion of the works, a further inspection will be undertaken to ensure the road is in a safe and trafficable condition for all road users,” read the letter.

Mr Hughes said the poor quality of work on the overtaking lanes had been of serious concern to locals and other road users.

He said he was given assurance by Minister Knoll’s office in July that the lanes had been fixed.

However it now appears that the lanes’ safety issues are persisting, with Mr Hughes saying the condition of the road leaves ‘a lot to be desired’.

“I urge all road users to take extra care until Minister Knoll and his Department can categorically confirm that the lanes are fixed,” he said.

“It is now school holidays and we have even more visitors in the region...the safety of drives and motorbike riders has always been my number one concern.”

Interim repairs on the lanes have been ongoing, with the speed limit on the road being lowered to 60km/hr at one point.

A Department of Planning, Transport and Industry (DPTI) spokesperson said some repair works have been undertaken, with more planned during the summer.

“Full rectification is planned to be completed by early 2019, weather permitting,” the spokesperson said.

“The respective overtaking lanes will only be temporarily closed if significant issues arise relating to the condition.

“DPTI will ensure communications to the public occur as normal practice, and motorists are advised to drive carefully and observe the direction of traffic management and signage if repairs are being undertaken.”