Albury-Wodonga Bypass Will Save Lives
The Australian Automobile Association today welcomed the opening of the Albury-Wodonga bypass but stressed the need to continue upgrading the Hume Highway as quickly as possible.
AAA Executive Director, Mike Harris, congratulated the Government on its investment in the Albury-Wodonga bypass, which will bring a major economic and social improvement for both regional and national economies.
Mr Harris said the 17km bypass will enable motorists on the Hume Highway to avoid 17 sets of traffic lights and save up to 15 minutes on their trip.
“Modern freeways are significantly safer than undivided roads because they have safety built in - features such as wide medians, sealed shoulders, overpasses and safety barriers all help to save lives,” he said.
But Mr Harris said the fact was the Hume Highway still had large sections of road which were not yet divided.
“That’s not good enough for the main road link between Sydney and Melbourne, particularly when you consider the volume of private and commercial traffic that uses the highway constantly,” he said.
“AAA, on behalf of the motoring Clubs and our six million members, welcomes the opening of the bypass, but only 10 kilometres up the road there is a single lane highway where opposing traffic is separated by just a splash of paint.
“We welcomed the Federal Government’s allocation of an extra $800 million in the 2006-07 budget for the Hume Highway duplication - these funds now need to be utilised expediently to get the remaining single-lane sections up to an acceptable standard.”
Last year, as part of its Australian Road Assessment Program (AusRAP), AAA rated the Hume Highway in Victoria 3 and 4 stars for safety. The Hume Highway in NSW will shortly be star rated by the AAA using data from the NSW Roads and Traffic Authority.