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State-first yellow line trial on highway upgrade

The ‘yellow line’ safety trial helping drivers more easily identify changed road conditions in place at roadworks around the Harwood bridge. Image: Fran Dowsett.
• Statewide first, with ‘yellow line’ safety trial starting on 155-kilometre Woolgoolga to Ballina section of the Pacific Highway upgrade, helping motorists more easily identify work zones • Trial to be monitored and potentially extended to other projects if successful The Pacific Highway upgrade between Woolgoolga and Ballina continues to be at the forefront of road safety innovation, with a trial now underway on installing a ‘yellow markings’ system to help drivers more easily identify changed conditions. Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said selected temporary work zones along the 155-kilometre Woolgoolga to Ballina upgrade were the first to trial yellow lines, which replace the familiar white road markings. “There is an obvious connection between a safer road system and reductions in fatalities and serious injuries. Ensuring the safety of drivers, cyclists and workers during upgrades is vitally important and yellow lines are one of a number of initiatives being considered to help achieve this,” Mr Chester said. New South Wales Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey said a 1.2-kilometre section of road south of the bridge over the Clarence River at Harwood was the first location the yellow lines were installed. “The trial will be monitored with photos, dashcam footage and a survey to understand if the high-visibility markings encourage motorists to slow down in work zones and therefore improve safety,” Mrs Pavey said. Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan said if the trial was successful similar measures would be implemented across the state’s roadwork zones. “The yellow line markings will be used to more clearly show motorists changed conditions such as rough road surfaces, reduced speed limits or workers and machinery nearby. Signs warning motorists they are entering a yellow line marked zone, advising them to follow the yellow lines and when they are leaving the yellow line-marked zone will be installed to further improve awareness of the pilot programme,” Mr Hogan said. New South Wales Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis said changes to road conditions including temporarily moving traffic to service roads, increased use of concrete barriers and reduced speed zones were important safety elements of the Woolgoolga and Ballina project. “Work is underway on 104 kilometres of the Woolgoolga to Ballina section, with the remaining 51 kilometres expected to start this year,” Mr Gulaptis said. The Australian and New South Wales governments are jointly funding the Woolgoolga to Ballina upgrade on an 80:20 basis. Road users are encouraged to provide their feedback on the trial by participating in a short survey at