AN INFRASTRUCTURE project that will see wire rope barriers installed on major roads will also reduce the risk of fatal accidents caused by black ice, the TAC says.
Police and TAC experts have warned drivers to remain extra vigilant as emergency workers continue to face the impacts of black ice in the area.
TAC manager of technical police Samantha Buckis said black ice was transparent and very difficult to see.
“Motorists need to look out for signs, black ice and make sure they are really watching,” Ms Buckis said.
“Infrastructure upgrades can help. (We are) installing wire rope barriers and centreline barriers (which in) particular can really help stopping cars from slipping and sliding onto another oncoming vehicle.”
She said the TAC was constantly striving to ensure installed infrastructure would reduce the risk of fatal and severe accidents in all weather. She said roads with poorer surfaces would also be investigated to see if there were ways infrastructure could be improve to heighten safety.
VicRoads has no plans to install more advisory signs, which cost $27,000 and a further $20,000 for the dtection system, however says it is constantly researching ways to make roads safer.
VicRoads Regional Director Ewen Nevett said black ice is particularly dangerous as it is transparent unlike frost which is white.
Electronic ice warning signs are on known high risk locations such as the Midland Highway between Blampied and Daylesford and on the Western Highway in the vicinity of Gordon. Static "slippery when wet" signs are used elsewhere to warn motorists at other higher risk locations.
“These areas have been identified as having a high incidence of black ice formation, but black ice is unpredictable and can develop anywhere on any road, particularly during severe frosts,” Mr Nevett said.
Ballarat Highway patrol Senior Sergeant Pat Cleary urged drivers not be reliant on warning signs – saying they had to understand that black ice could form anywhere. “Known areas are signposted,” Senior Sergeant Cleary said. “People need to take particular care when driving over overpasses.They need to slow down and be mindful.” Police will be ensuring motorists are keeping their cars in roadworthy conditions, with police particularly frustrated by the number of people driving with only one headlight working. Check conditions on VicRoads website.
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