Chill guys – truckers can see hazards before you can

CHILL GUYS: Truckers can see highway hazards – the yellow line is not a passport to passing. Image: Suppied

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa – There is a common perception among many motorists that cars have right-of-way way over trucks, that the big guys should move aside for faster vehicles/

However, they fail to appreciate that the truck driver might have a good reason not to move left. Let’s clarify this issue… It’s important to look at what the regulations say about yellow-lane driving. Regulation 298A of the National Road Traffic Act explains that yellow-lane driving is always forbidden except under the following circumstances…

If there’s a genuine emergency such as a breakdown; when rushing to hospital; or if you need to stop suddenly for a medical or other emergency. On a freeway only emergency vehicles may use the yellow lane.

WATCH THE LIMITATIONS

It can never be used as a passing lane on a freeway but on a single-lane road vehicles may move into the yellow lane to allow faster vehicles to pass – though this, too, is governed by limitations. It may only be done…

  • When another vehicle needs to overtake
  • If there is no chance of endangering anyone’s life
  • During daylight hours
  • If you have a clear 150m of visibility in front of you – so it may not be done when approaching a blind rise or when in rain or fog

The MD of MasterDrive, Eugene Herbert, says drivers must understand that while using the yellow lane to allow other vehicles to pass is permissible to prevent traffic backing-up, it is courteous driving, not a legal requirement.

“If the driver of a truck feels moving over the yellow lane will endanger himself or others he is under no obligation to do so. In turn, car drivers should respect that and not pressurise a trucker into a possibly dangerous situation.

“Remember, truck drivers have a much better view of potential danger and if they decide to not move into the yellow lane, they likely have good reason. Not only are they protecting their own safety but also yours.

”Practice patience.”

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