by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
Journeys : Apr May 2012
Your views It’s fly or die at Lukla I enjoyed the article ‘Himalayan Sunrise’ but it is a bit unfair to Kathmandu Tribhuvan International Airport, which can accommodate most modern jetliners. The photo is actually of Runway 24/06 at Lukla, which is used by small aircraft that fly in from Kathmandu, usually in the mornings before the cloud descends. It is the starting point for many of the treks in the Nepal Himalaya. The runway was originally the brainchild of Sir Edmund Hillar y, who bought the land for it in 1964. It was initially unsealed and the surface was f lattened out by the bare feet of the villagers stomping on it for several days before the first flight ar rived. It is sealed now but landing is still quite exciting, as it is steeply uphill and full power is needed after touchdown to get to the parking apron. Taking off is even more exciting as it is steeply downhill and ends with a sheer drop to the valley below. Once committed, that’s it, you have to fly or die! Chris King Newstead A broad yellow line ... Having travelled extensively interstate in the last few years, the best safety feature I’ve encountered is a yellow centre line on roads where there is no overtaking or crossing into another lane. It is instantly recognisable that you do not cross and it’s reassuring to know you are not inadvertently driving into oncoming traffic. It is particularly helpful where there are sections of dual carriageway and overtaking lanes. There are many sections of highway in Tasmania that would be safer with a centre yellow line and I can’t see that the cost factor would be much greater. Jeannie Green Claremont ... and a wide white line Since moving to the Eastern Shore I have noticed that the road rules appear to be different from elsewhere in the state. In particular, at the Golf Links Road traffic lights, many drivers doing a right-hand turn from Derwent Avenue into the East Derwent Highway assume they may turn ahead of, or at the same time as, those turning left into the highway from Golf Links Road. At peak hours, people coming from Golf Links Road often w ish to choose the right hand lane heading south, to avoid being caught behind a bus at the bus stop located close to this junction. However, due to the aggressive approach of drivers from Derwent Avenue, they are left with no choice but to take the left lane. Is it not the case that the left-turning driver has precedence according to the rules? Similarly, despite the line dividing the left and the right side of the highway being a very wide solid stripe, many drivers choose to do a right-hand turn across the centre line when travelling nor th, to access the BP garage and/or the Beltana Hotel. Is it correct that the solid white line indicates that this action is outlawed? Barbara Wakefield Geilston Bay Darren Moody, R ACT General Manager Roadside and Technical Services, writes: If there are no directional lines marked, then drivers turning left out of Golf Links Road have right of way over those turning right out of Derwent Avenue. In relation to the second question, the last round of road rule changes allows you to cross a single solid line for the purposes of turning into another street or driveway. From the Tasmanian road rules: Single continuous lines are replacing double broken lines. You can cross a single continuous dividing line (when it’s safe): • To turn from or into another road • To turn from or into an area like a driveway or car park • To avoid a hazard on the road You cannot cross a single continuous dividing line: • To overtake another vehicle • To do a U-turn Bad habits Recently a prominent businessman in Northern Tasmania was booked for putting his seatbelt on after the car was moving. This brings to question how he learnt to drive. I learnt with Lindsay Driving School of Ulverstone in an FC Holden with a faulty hand brake. My driving instructor insisted the seat belt was put on prior to starting the car. This avoids being booked for a seat belt offence. As many bad habits are passed on by other drivers, including parents, surely we should insist all drivers seeking their licence should have at least three lessons with a driving school (morning, noon and night) prior to doing their road test. Jim Campbell Ulverstone Watching the speedo Roger Walker’s letter on the need to constantly watch the speedo (February/ March Jour neys) prov ided interesting food for thought. Some would say that the easiest way to avoid infringements is not to speed. However, it’s not quite that simple. It has been legal to sell cars with speedometers that could be at least 10% out. Like Roger, I drive 50,000 to 80,000 kilometres each year and I have owned cars with speedos varying from –14 to +6 km/hr. It is an issue, particularly in Victoria where enforcement allows only a 3 km/hr margin. During the period Roger discusses, governments have become addicted to revenue from speed cameras, gambling machines and tobacco. Unfortunately, radar-based speed detection is not 100% accurate. Laser is better but not perfect and accurate data on error rates is hard to find, for obvious reasons. It is no wonder Victorians are so cynical about the use of speed cameras. I defended two supposed infringements on the basis that they were mathematically impossible. The fact that an infringement may be impossible does not guarantee success because one has to find a solicitor and magistrate who understand a mathematical argument. However, going to court is time-consuming, stressful and expensive and in the absence of mathematics or a witness it becomes a case of a police officer’s word against a civilian’s. One has no choice but to pay up. In our community 12 April / May 2012
Feb March 2012
Jun Jul 2012