Lifesaving measures

A centreline flexible safety barrier, like this one pictured on the Melba Highway, will be installed along Melbourne-Lancefield Road between Lancefield and Monegeetta to prevent the prospect of head-on collisions.

A centreline flexible safety barrier, like this one pictured on the Melba Highway, will be installed along Melbourne-Lancefield Road between Lancefield and Monegeetta to prevent the prospect of head-on collisions.

Plans for the multi-million upgrade of a prime section of the Melbourne-Lancefield Road were revealed in detail last week.

VicRoads unveiled a display of plans at a community consultation session in Lancefield, with about 70 locals attending to ask questions and make comments.

Construction works between Lancefield and Monegeetta are scheduled to begin in October with numerous safety inclusions proposed such as the introduction of up to seven new overtaking opportunities and a centreline flexible safety barrier to be installed to prevent the prospect of head-on collisions.

This safety concept was used on the notorious Yea-Molesworth section of the Goulburn Valley Highway in 2015 (later extended), and attracted considerable criticism at the time.

The measure saved three lives after a driver crashed into the barrier when he fell asleep at the wheel near Yea, according to VicRoads Safe System Road Infrastructure Program director Bryan Sherritt.

Between March and July this year, there have been nine vehicle hits on the centre line barrier that has been installed on this section of the Goulburn Valley Highway.

"Flexible safety barriers have been designed to stretch to absorb the force of the crash. They deflect the energy of a crash away from people in cars, and the way the rope deflects contains the vehicle from hitting other objects," he said.

"VicRoads carefully examines our roads and applies the most appropriate road safety treatment to suit an individual length of road where crashes are most likely to occur. For every 100-kilometre stretch of a high-speed, high-volume road, such as Melbourne-Lancefield Road, 17 people are killed or seriously injured every year.

"Flexible roadside and centreline barriers will help reduce run-off-road and head-on crashes by 85 per cent."

While attendees welcomed the $20 million made available by the state government to make the increasingly busy Lancefield to Melbourne road safer, not everyone was convinced the precise details unveiled are the total answer.

Former Macedon Ranges traffic police chief Geoff Neil, a long-time Romsey resident, said the prime issue was road safety.

Along with Monegeetta resident David Allen, Mr Neil hopes there is a rethink on some of the concepts.

"This is a formative start to an extensive process ... many issues need to be addressed," Mr Neil commented.

VicRoads is keen to hear from landowners and road users. The VicRoads team members present were able to further explain some of the benefits of the overall design plans.

This upgrade does not include the proposed works at the main intersection in Romsey. It is yet to be announced if traffic lights or a roundabout will eventually go at this location.

Anyone who would like to speak to VicRoads or share their views can phone 0409 855 080 or email engage.ssrip@roads.vic.gov.au

VicRoads will collate the feedback and report back to the community on how their views have been incorporated into the proposal.

Romsey meeting

Tomorrow evening an information session will be held at the Romsey Neighbourhood House from 7pm to discuss major intersection improvements in the town.

VicRoads wants to hear residents' views about the Main Street/Barry Street corner.

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