Two sections of the flush median on State Highway 1 in Tinwald will be re-marked by the NZ Transport Agency to assist drivers to turn right from Wilkin Street onto the highway and turn right into Manchester Street from SH1.
The flush median will be widened by about one metre, so drivers can feel more confident using them.
A flush median is a strip in the centre of the road that is marked with white diagonal lines within parallel lines. It provides a place for vehicles that are turning right, or vehicles that have turned right onto the road from a side road or driveway, to merge with the left-hand traffic stream.
The Transport Agency aims to complete the work next week.
Transport Agency Journey Manager Lee Wright says as well as widening the flush median to about three metres, the Transport Agency will add a turning bay on SH1 for drivers to turn right into Manchester Street. The turning bay into Wilkin Street will be removed.
"This will make it easier for drivers to turn right from Wilkin Street onto the highway and will encourage those heading to east Tinwald to use Manchester Street instead of Wilkin Street."
Cycle lanes will also be moved closer to the kerb and yellow no-stopping lines will be added on SH1, to the left and right of Manchester Street.
Ashburton District Council Roading Manager Brian Fauth says drivers turning right onto SH1 from Wilkin Street should use the flush median. "The width is now more than sufficient to use for merging (like a zip) with the left-hand traffic stream."
NZTA's advice on how to use a flush median
- It's alright to drive on a flush median for a short distance if you're turning into or out of a side road or driveway. You can use them to slow down before making a right-hand turn, or to merge left into a gap in the traffic flow.
- If you're using the flush median to make a right-hand turn you should indicate, then steer gently onto the median rather than at an abrupt angle. Use the median as an area to slow down and brake. This way the following traffic doesn't have to slow down rapidly to avoid you.
- Carry out a similar manoeuvre if you're using the flush median as a refuge before merging into traffic on your left. Remember to indicate and check your mirrors, accelerate, and move gently into a gap in the traffic.
- When you're using a flush median, always remember to watch out for pedestrians, other vehicles using the median and any raised islands.
Learn more about flush medians