Two accidents on Mt Ousley during this morning’s peak caused increased traffic on Lawrence Hargrave Drive this morning.
While the M1 was not closed, the accidents resulted lengthy traffic delays in and out of Wollongong, again forcing motorist onto Lawrence Hargrave Drive.
Overall there’s been a significant increase in local traffic since Bulli Pass closed earlier this month.
According to the RMS around 12,000 vehicles are now using Lawrence Hargrave Drive each day, compared with around 4400 prior to the closure.
They say the traffic increase is most noticeable in peak periods, between 5am- 8am and 4pm-7pm.
While a tow truck sits at Austinmer Beach car park, ready to spring into action should there be trouble, Parliamentary Secretary for the Illawarra Gareth Ward says an emergency plan is firmly in place.
“Emergency vehicles can get through the work on Bulli Pass if they need to,” he says, “but it’s not practical to open the whole road to traffic. There are workers carrying out challenging and complex geotechnical work and we need to provide them with a safe working environment.
“I will always do everything I can to minimise disruption to motorists. Earlier this month I was able to have the RMS open Bulli Pass when that accident closed Mt Ousley, because the works were in the early stages.
“But we do have an Emergency Management Plan in place if another incident was to occur.
“I just hope that throughout these works we don’t see any other issues on the Princes Highway so we can get on with improving Bulli Pass for the safety of all users.”
Photo thanks to Soni Putnis