Lights floated again for danger spot

Tim Edmunds and John DobsonAlbany Advertiser
The Chester Pass Road-Albany Highway roundabout has been named WA’s second-riskiest regional intersection.
Camera IconThe Chester Pass Road-Albany Highway roundabout has been named WA’s second-riskiest regional intersection.

WA’s peak automotive lobby group says authorities need to consider traffic lights at Albany’s most dangerous intersection.

The RAC revealed last week that the Chester Pass Road roundabout and adjacent South Coast Highway intersection, named the second-riskiest regional intersection in WA and sixth-worst intersection in a survey in 2017, had no work done to improve safety since the survey.

The RAC said there was no work planned, funded or in progress at the intersection which, according to Main Roads WA’s most recent figures, has recorded 213 crashes in the five years to 2016.

In its 2017 report, the RAC said the roundabout and intersection of South Coast Highway with Albany Highway, had a confusing road or intersection layout, inadequate crossing or turning opportunity and inadequate traffic light system.

Stopping short of calling for the installation of traffic lights, RAC general manager of corporate affairs Will Golsby told the Albany Advertiser authorities should investigate whether traffic lights were suitable for the site.

“Traffic lights can be effective in managing traffic flow and we support their use in appropriate locations,” he said. “However, a range of factors, including safety audits and traffic modelling, need to be considered when planning any road network modifications.”

The Albany Ring Road project, designed to take heavy haulage traffic away from the roundabout, missed out on Federal funding announced last month.

It sparked a tit-for-tat between O’Connor MP Rick Wilson and State Transport Minister Rita Saffioti over who was to blame for the project missing out on funding.

“RAC’s recently released Federal Priorities for WA highlights Albany Ring Road as a critical infrastructure project to provide a safer and more efficient road network around Albany,” Mr Golsby said.

“(The) Albany Ring Road will help to address the bottlenecks created by the Chester Pass roundabout and reduce the volume of heavy vehicles mixing with local and tourist traffic, providing safety benefits and easing traffic delays.”

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