GAMES AND BEYOND: Drivers will have to get used to the M1 truck restrictions after they were introduced on August 1.
GAMES AND BEYOND: Drivers will have to get used to the M1 truck restrictions after they were introduced on August 1. Contributed

Safer? You've got to be joking : Truckies on M1 lane bans

TRUCKIES continue to voice their concerns about new lane restrictions on the M1 that were implemented in Queensland on August 1.

The law change, which was announced earlier this year, aims to reduce congestion for the Commonwealth Games.

Drivers in vehicles 4.5tonnes and over are required to travel only in the far left lanes on a stretch of the often congested motorway.

Trucking advocate Rod Hannifey is one of the many professional drivers who believes the laws simply don't work.

"It is a lousy idea and the fact that first they said it was only for the Games and then turned around and said it was staying on was worse," Rod said.

"I travelled to Geelong a few times, there are similar laws in place there and because Melbourne has zero tolerance for speeding a lot travel under the limit. And we have to follow them the whole way, because we are not able to to move to another lane.

"You don't have to be a rocket scientist to see that this slows things down. Trucks are speed limited to 100, the only people we are holding up are the people not doing the speed limit.

"We are a service industry, we don't ride up and down the road empty because we have nothing better to do with our time.

"Are the motorists going to pay more to use more of the roads?"

Rod admitted drivers may put up with the change during the Games but the extension had gone too far.

"I understand their intent for the Games, I can't see how they can justify carrying it on afterwards," he said.

"It's not a well thought- out road safety initiative."

Steve Harris agreed.

"If anything it has made it worse," he said.

"In peak hours it has made the left two lanes worse then ever and has not made the right two flow any better.

"Not sure what they are trying to achieve."

Driver Archer, who was driving in a car, also found the first week of the new laws painful on the motorway, creating a line of trucks on the left.

"I was trying to get off at an exit but there were two B-doubles and a single caught behind a slow body truck with scaffold doing 90 or so," he said. "I couldn't get between them and had to fly past to take the exit."

The Minister confirmed trucks were permitted to overtake other vehicles but insisted they must not travel outside the left two lanes.

There is little doubt a debate on the matter will continue well beyond the Commonwealth Games.

Big Rigs


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