Passing Etiquette on gravel roads.

Submitted: Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 08:54
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Hi All,

I know that I'll be preaching to the converted here, but there have been a few incident's out here recently that have me wondering what people consider the correct etiquette for passing another vehicle on dirt/gravel roads?

What I practice is, if approaching another vehicle that is coming from the opposite direction, then slow down to a reasonable speed say 40 km/h, & move as far left as is safe to do so, if both vehicles do this then there is little chance of a collision or stone damage.

What I find happening is that when the other vehicle sees that I've slowed & moved over, then that is an invitation for them to hog the center of the road & go faster! Thanks for the broken windscreen & stone chips to the paintwork!

Secondly, if I'm approaching another vehicle from behind, & that vehicle is going substantially slower than I am, then I turn my lights on if there not already on, & move to a position where I can be seen in their side mirror, once they see me & move over enough so that I can pass, then I will move over to the right as far as practicable & pass at a slightly faster speed than they are going, once I have passed far enough so that I don't shower them in stones then I return to my previous speed & move back over to the left.

When passing a Road Train from the opposite direction then I pull over & stop! Then wait for the dust to clear.
If approaching one from behind then I practice the same as for a car.

The reason for this little rant is that both my wife & I have been nearly run off the road recently by people on the wrong side of the road coming around corners, had windscreens smashed be rocks when people haven't moved over or slowed down!

Just because your on a dirt/gravel road doesn't mean that the common road rules don't apply, there are other people using the same roads as you!

I could go on & on about the near misses that we've had but I think you get my point, hopefully!



For those that do the right thing, thank you, It is muck appreciated!

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Reply By: Flighty ( WA ) - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:02

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:02
Jeff,
Agree 100 % on your approach and etiquette on gravel.
Get the same here on some of ours here too, but defies me as to why is it mostly people on holiday, that are always in a big rush ?

Cheers
Paul

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Reply By: pop2jocem - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:11

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:11
Jeff,

What you have written is pretty much common sense and common courtesy but unfortunately both are getting less common. It appears that a lot of travelers try to fit four weeks of holidays into two weeks and so go like a bat out of hell to get to as many stopovers as possible without enjoying the journey in between.

Cheers
Pop
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Reply By: Aussi Traveller - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:15

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:15
What pi$$es me off, is when you slow down move over and the on coming car moves to the middle of the road and passes you at speed without a care and stone flying.

AnswerID: 508529

Follow Up By: Ozrover - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:42

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:42
Yes, we definitely agree on that one!

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Follow Up By: Michaeljp - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:47

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:47
yes exactly, and when they pass they have the temerity to wave at you. If i see them not slow down i shake my fist at them as they approach.
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Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:50

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:50
I'll second that - one of my pet hates - I've found that if they do that to someone in front of me in my convoy - usually someone I'm traveling with calls out a warning - I make sure I occupy the center of the road with the 40 series and the rather substantial bull-bar - and make them pull over before I do - they usually get the message......
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Follow Up By: Dennis Ellery - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 15:24

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 15:24
Thats sounds dangerous to me - it used to be called chicken.
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Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 16:23

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 16:23
not really (but sort of) - I'm not forcing them off the road or occupying their space - just reminding them if we want to get into a close quarter rock tossing exercise, see who has the most to lose...... so basically reminding them that courtesy is a 2-way exercise.....
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Follow Up By: Litlbalt - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 16:59

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 16:59
We had this exact thing happen heading into Birdsville last year and smashed our windscreen. We called them up on the radio but of course no answer.
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Reply By: baz&pud (tassie) - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:30

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:30
Hi Guys,
Agree with every thing that has been said, except for the part, passing road trains, we can never catch the buggers.
Baz
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 17:50

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 17:50
I have to agree Baz. Never had cause to overtake a road train and wouldn't want to even try in the Troopy!
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: Member - VickiW - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 21:01

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 21:01
I second that (or third) - I follow all that has been said except passing road trains - I am too chicken for that & happy to stay well behind them
I too have got pretty annoyed if oncoming cars don't act appropriately but console myself knowing they are idiots :)

Interestingly enough I live just outside Sydney (close enough to commute in each day) but on a fairly corrugated dirt road. Almost everyone travel 30 - 40ks - the courtesy & good sense continues to amaze me after living here 15 yrs.
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Follow Up By: Member - Duncan W (WA) - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 09:14

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 09:14
Had a pleasant experience over-taking a road train on the GCR last year (in my Troopy). Guy saw me coming and moved to the wrong side of the road so that I could see straight down the road. Also the cross wind was blowing the dust to that side of th eroad also. For me to have passed on the right as per normal would have meant that I would have been passing in the dust.

Dunc
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Follow Up By: Ozrover - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 09:49

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 09:49
Most Truck drivers out here will do that once they realize that your back there.

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Reply By: Member - John - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:37

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:37
Oz, agree with you, but one thing you didn't mention was using the UHF to call the road train or what ever in front of you when trying to pass, can make it so much easier if they know you are behind them. Cheers. John
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Follow Up By: Ozrover - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:51

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:51
I don't usually bother to call out on the UHF, one reason is that I really don't want to distract the Road Train Driver any more than is necessary, & if he sees me & makes room to pass then well & good.

If he doesn't see me, or is unable to make room, then I'll just stay back a bit & enjoy the ride.

A lot of people don't realize that on our wonderful dirt/gravel/sandy roads, if a road train hits a soft edge then he can quite easily roll a trailer full of stock, I'd rather just wait for a bit.

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Follow Up By: Member - John - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:56

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:56
Oz, fair enough. John
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Reply By: mike39 - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:47

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:47
Another thing that makes me shake my head in wonder are the groups who travel in convoy at a 100klicks with a 50metre umbelical cord joining them.
The front guy is in the clear air, but the rest are choking their engines with dust and rocks flying around like bullets.
Of course the occupants of the vehicles are in a filtered air conditioned comfort zone so what goes on outside their coocoon dont matter.
mike
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Follow Up By: Ozrover - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:54

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 09:54
We had a group of Chinese come through last year, & they were told by their group leader to stay within 50m of the car in front! on the first day they rolled a car on the Mereenie Loop!

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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 10:15

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 10:15
Yep, experienced that nose to tail syndrome when traveling in the Pilbara last year. Now as any who have travelled in that lovely fine red dust know even relatively slow speed kicks up a lot of dust and rocks.
Here is this peanut about 3 car lengths behind us and stayed there for a few k's. We found out when I pulled right over that his equally challenged mate was another 3 car lengths behind him and we were doing about 80 kph before slowing and pulling over to let them go.

What the....????????

Cheers
Pop
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Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 12:05

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 12:05
Usually I find the worst offenders at this are the late model GU/200/disco crowd with fancy dan off-road camper trailers traveling in convoy - they get a sense of might is right and won't move over for anyone....
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Follow Up By: Member - kym111 - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 18:23

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 18:23
Scott! I object! I've got a GU with an off-road caravan, and I hate choking on dust from someone in front, as much as you! Or are you one of these arrogant Landcruiser drivers.... ? lol
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Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 20:00

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 20:00
Kym - I did include 200's in the list :-)

I was more poking at club groups with all the latest & greatest travelling in convoys with some sense of 'manifest destiny' .... "we got the numbers and all the gear so get out of our way..."
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Follow Up By: Member - kym111 - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 21:51

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 21:51
Haha, it's ok Scott. I was also having a bit of a dig. In my experience, Japanese tourists would have to be the worst for hogging the road, regardless of what they drive!
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Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 22:38

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 22:38
Actually a Fritz in a Britz are the worst - get confused over which side of the road to drive on ..... almost got taken out by one on the Leopold Downs Road ..... would be funny if I wasn't cleaning my dacks out afterwards .....think he had a brain snap and was convinced I was on his side of the road and held his line until I suspect he had a last second realisation that he was actually driving in Australia...........
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Reply By: Member - Andrew & Jen - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 10:19

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 10:19
Hullo Jeff

I am with you 100%

Unfortunately bush etiquette seems to be on the decline in many ways, not only when passing on dirt roads - camping near waterholes, not leaving gates as you find them, anti-social behaviour at camp sites, etc.

Having slowed down and been sprayed with stones quite a few times, I have now concluded that I was slowing down and pulling to the left too early.

So now when I see another vehicle approaching (not a truck, I might add :), I move to the centre of the road and start slowing - down to say 40 kph. This results in the other vehicle also slowing and moving to its left. When about 150m away, I then move to my left, give them a wave and we pass at a reasonable speed.

In the cases where they come to stop, I also stop, exchange info about the condition of the road ahead and wish them a safe journey.

Seems to work so far. Mind you, it helps to be driving a F250 with a big bullbar, dual rears and a big van :-)

Cheers
Andrew
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Follow Up By: Bazooka - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 14:29

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 14:29
Agree Andrew, holding your line initially and slowing down generally works well even in a standard 4wd. Moving over early seems to be a signal to some of these drivers to go past you at top speed.
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Reply By: Idler Chris - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 10:23

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 10:23
Unfortunately the idiots we are all talking about are so self centred that they would not be reading anything on this sight.
What other people think of me is none of my business.
Do unto others what you would have them do unto you.

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Reply By: Bushranger1 - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 10:33

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 10:33
G'day Jeff,
When I worked on a station in the Kimberley some years back the owner showed me a way to deal with these inconsiderate morons that come at you speeding in the gravel in the opposite direction.

Slow down for them & pull to the left but if there is no indication of them slowing keep your speed down & move into their path & head directly at them! We get some pretty abusive drivers when we do this but at least we don't end up with busted windscreens & headlights by these inconsiderate drivers. Let me tell you when your coming at then with a 4wd with a bull bar it slows em down!

Cheers
Stu
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Follow Up By: Rockape - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:21

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:21
Stu,
I changed my driving style to what you have said some years back. It works well.

I was just peeved by so many drivers having to arrive at their destination before they had even started their trip.

Some even think heavy transport and road trains should move over for them because they pay rego. Boy don't they get a shock when those silly big buggers don't move over.






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Follow Up By: Bushranger1 - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:54

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:54
Thanks Rockape. Last time I mentioned I did this I was criticised by some for my "dangerous driving style".
There comes a point where due to frustration one has to take drastic measures!

Not much of a holiday when you're racing from one destination to another with an unrealistic time schedule & putting yourself & others at risk by travelling too fast in the gravel.
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Follow Up By: Rockape - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 12:13

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 12:13
Mate,
I expect to get criticised as well but I don't think that will worry an old silverback like me.

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Reply By: Member - John N (SA) - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 10:56

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 10:56
Great post Jeff,

We experienced your exact scenario on our trip to Cape York last year. The car & camper that broke our windscreen moved to the centre of the road and maintained its high speed after we had moved to the left and slowed. The driver even waved and acknowledged our courteous act as he sped by. (although I tried, I wasn't able to raise the driver on UHF and let him know). This was early in our trip and sadly we found he wasn't the only one - and although I'm sure we weren't, it seemed our group was the only one that did the right thing as you have suggested.

Our mob will be up your way early next month. We are looking forward to a camp night at Mt Dare on our way to Old Andado and then to Palm Valley etc. I hope all our fellow travellers take note of your post.

Cheers

John
AnswerID: 508547

Follow Up By: Kyle H - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 12:54

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 12:54
John
Did the camper have a stone deflector on the front of it. When I was recently at the Cape I have found the deflectors on the front of campers were deflecting the stones away from their vehicle and into the path of on coming traffic.
Every time I see a camper or for that matter a caravan with the vertical type stone deflector I stay well out of their way.
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Follow Up By: Member - John N (SA) - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 13:35

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 13:35
G'day Kyle,

I can't recall that one, but most of them did. It makes sense that rocks could bounce off those screens and into the path of other traffic, particularly if the driver kept up the speed. Seems to be quite a common issue from the discussion so far.

Cheers

John
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Reply By: The Bunyip - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:49

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:49
Jeff,
I too live in the country & feel comfortable replying safe in the knowledge out our way this type of thing is a daily occurrence.

Too many drivers are far too courteous & move over too early, thereby offering the invitation to oncoming traffic to thunder past without a care as you've explained. Therein lies the main problem. Remember we are all equally entitled to the stretch of road we're travelling on.

So irrespective of whether I'm towing or not, I tend to slow down while staying on the bitumen (or in the case of dirt simply stay in the middle of the road) until what I deem to be a safe distance & only then move over. In some cases I only move over after the other car obliges. They quickly get the message that the road is not theres!!

Now I accept this may sound like a game of "chicken" to a degree, but if you can see in the distance a car heading your way clearly not slowing down, I've found they'll sure as hell slow down when you don't move over for them too early.

No doubt others on this site may disagree but it works fine for me & certainly reduces damage to windscreens & the like.
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Reply By: olcoolone - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:55

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:55
Jeff we do what you have listed in your original post but there seem to be many others out there who don't give a damn.

About 3 years ago heading into the Lake Eyre area we had this bird driving a new black Ford Ranger with all the bling towing her new softtop camper come towards us doing over 80kph on our side of the road....... we were doing about 40Kph........ as she past she kicked up a heap of stones resulting in us getting a cracked windscreen.

Only if some would stop and think......... we have big issues with the campers hire vehicles like the Britzs travelling too fast and not thinking of anyone except themselves.......

As for travelling in convoy, we usually travel about 1km apart...... we get very cranky with other newcomers who travel with us and think they have to sit a few car lengths behind us incase they get lost.

The other frustrating thing in a convoy is travelling with others who don't have cruise control.

AnswerID: 508554

Follow Up By: Bushranger1 - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 12:54

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 12:54
I was wondering when someone was going to mention the Britz's.

They can be some of the worst offenders!
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Follow Up By: baz&pud (tassie) - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 16:23

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 16:23
We were on the Gibb River Road a few years back, with a friend following about half a k behind. he radioed that a Britz had just passed him and would be on our tail very soon.

Towing a van, we couldn't see him coming, so not to sure how he new exactly where we were, but he passed, and to our amazement his spare wheel was flapping in the breeze, and stones were flying everywhere.

Couple of days later we heard a Britz had rolled, but don't know if it was our passer by or not.
Cheers.
Baz
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Follow Up By: KevinE - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 23:21

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 23:21
Not forgetting all those males with their chests puffed out who drive a certain brand of 4WD & think that they're Neil Armstrong for doing a bit of off roading! ;)
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Reply By: Peter_n_Margaret - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:58

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 11:58
Then occasionally, something special happens..... :-)

On 2 occasions (once on the Kalumburu road and once on the Strz) we have had road trains notice us behind them and deliberately pull to the RHS so we could overtake on the dust free inside.

The occasion on the Strz was conducted without radio.
The guy on the Kalumburu road called us first and invited us through. A few kms further along, we stopped, put the kettle on and he joined us for a cuppa before we both moved off again.

It does happen.

Cheers,
Peter
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Follow Up By: Member - Joe n Mel n kids (FNQ - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 20:27

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 20:27
all about respect eh, respect them as they are at work and they WILL return the favour, they have a life and it is on the road, prig of a life but it is there job, if we respect them and there work they will gladly help us on our trips ......
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Reply By: The Bantam - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 12:22

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 12:22
As I drive arround, particularly in the city I find the people have no idea what so ever about polite road use and all too often they do not even know their road rules.

Simply, stupid driving is epedemic.

Even worse, there are plenty of people who get abusive when their obligation is to yeild or give way and you don't let them barge in.

Every day, I travel into the city some one somewhere, passes me, barges in front of me then exits on the next exit......when there is nothing behind me.

So why would anybody expect these people to know how to behave on narrow country road and dirt......when they cant even drive between white lines.

Then we have the problem that so many people do not know how to drive and place their vehicle on the road.

I was taught when I was 17, to always drive as near as practical to the left ( that is the law...still)......( on some roads that may be the centre)...and when I started to learn more and got involved in motorsport....I learned to enter wide and exit narrow...so you could see around the corner and you had a choice of line thru and out of the corner.

These to principles seem to be largely ignored.
so we have people driving down the middle of the road when there is plenty of room, when they come to a corner, they enter on the center line cut to the apex and have no choice about their line thru or out of the corner...and often they will be coming too fast.

SO what you find comming toward you is a car right in the middle of the road or completly on the wrong side of the road....on a corner easily capable to having two cars pass and moderate speed.

And yes....speed........so many of these people must have no idea that they cant see around the corner......and that this IS a problem.

I agree.......if I see a car approaching at speed on a single lane road....I slow and maintain my position in the centre of the road till the other car slows and shows signs of giving me, my half the road.

And its not just the city people who don'y know any better.......the worst are young turks in utes who obvioulsy know the road.

As far as trucks are concerned, I tend to adhere to the rules of the sea rather than the rules of the road......the vehicle restricted by its size or ability to manover has the right of way.

cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 13:33

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 13:33
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Reply By: Member - G.T. - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 16:11

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 16:11
Jeff, see post numbers 80200,84102. We have forum participants that are as you have described. Regards G.T.
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Follow Up By: Ozrover - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 16:44

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 16:44
Yes, there still around!

I didn't think it was a new topic, it just needs to be brought out every now & then that there are other people, be it Tourist/Travellers, grey nomads, road workers, station hands, truck drivers etc... that are using the same roads that you are & some of them don't seem to follow the same rules that apply to the rest of us!

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Reply By: scandal - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 17:13

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 17:13
I try to match the speed of the on coming vehicle so as to reciprocate their level of courtesy or lack thereof, if the on coming vehicle slows right down, so will I, if the idiot wants to do 80, well that's what he gets on return, I might cop some rocks into my screen, but my bet is so will he, seems a bit childish but I quickly learned just as you have described, slowing right down incites the idiots not to.

AnswerID: 508582

Reply By: Member - Fab72 (Paradise SA) - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 18:38

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 18:38
Jeff,
Last year heading back into Marree from Lake Eyre South, the exact thing you described above happened to me.
I slowed and moved to the left, the oncoming member head kept his speed up and moved to the centre of the road.
Result...a cracked windscreen.
Anyway mate... thanks for the info you posted on Facebook to me re: route to Mt Dare from Oodnadatta and back to Dalhousie...and I guess we'll be seeing you Monday night.
Fab.
AnswerID: 508588

Reply By: KevinE - Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 23:44

Tuesday, Apr 09, 2013 at 23:44
I had 2 experiences at Easter that show how unimaginative some drivers can be on dirt roads; 1st was at Beltana - we were on our way to Warraweena & just off the bitumen we decided to stop & have another look at the old Beltana railway station. On the way in I saw another vehicle coming the other way over the creek crossing, so I pulled over & flashed my headlights at him to keep coming. He did & when he got to us, he stopped & with a big arrogant smile on his face asked if I was lost? Mate, YOU WANKER! I stopped to let you pass! - seems you missed that bit. Obviously stopping to let others pass isn't something you normally think about?

The other happened while descending Pugilist's lookout in the rain on Easter Saturday - yet another jerk in "that" brand of 4WD decided to ascend while I was coming down. Mate, there are no trees or bushes - you can see for miles! Maybe the Akubra strategically placed on your dash blocked you view?

Don't get me started on the nose pickers who come up the Borefield track & then drive at great speed on the Oodnadatta track towards Maree without any consideration for those coming the other way!

By the way, thanks Jeff! :) your advice about stopping at the Eringa water hole on our jaunt to Dalhousie last year was very much appreciated & enjoyed! As was the advice we received at Mt Dare about the dog spikes on the old Ghan track!

Cheers,

Kevin.
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Follow Up By: Alloy c/t - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 09:36

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 09:36
Who's the "wanker" ? YOUR the one flashing lights ! IN what road rule book does it state that flashing headlights means to continue onwards ,, Flashing lights have always been a warning to stop/slow down / change direction ,,,, Who's the "wanker" ?? Stopping to check if you were lost / broken down etc shows that the other vehicle driver has concern for YOUR safety , ,,,,,,,,,,, So who's the "wanker" Kevin ??
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Follow Up By: KevinE - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 19:00

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 19:00
Hum, hit a nerve?

2 drivers meet at a creek where the road is too narrow for both to pass safely, both stop. One flashes & the other one drives on through & usually waves a thank you! At least that's how it happens most of the time where I travel.

& the answer to your question is.............. you for biting lol!

Bye! :)

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Reply By: bluefella - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 07:19

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 07:19
One other thing, if a road train or truck wants to overtake you DON'T drop your speed, these big fellas take a lot to wind up if slowed down, once their out to pass you then back right off, let em' get out of sight and enjoy your trip.

AnswerID: 508621

Follow Up By: Rockape - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 08:37

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 08:37
Bluey,

Good advise and just to add a little for those who haven't experienced the dynamics of a heavy vehicle.

another reason to keep your speed steady is. As the semi/b-double or train come up from behind and they have either just started or about to pull over to the other side of the road, if the vehicle slows there is a real risk of a trailer clipping the vehicle or the truck driver having to pull to the other side of the road more violently to avoid hitting the vehicle. This may cause that truck trailer combination to become unstable resulting in him losing control. It is especially relevant to trucks carting livestock.

Once he is out there you can lift your foot if the overtaking distance is becoming a bit short or if he is having trouble passing.

A few reasons for the truck not being able to get round safely in the distance could be a misjudgment by the driver, a mechanical problem or a road problem. Sometimes the road is wheel rolled in such a way that the trailers will pull the truck back and drop it's max speed by as much as 10 kph or more. The wheel rolling is just like unseen corrugations that are like ocean swells far enough apart for the tri's to drop into and act as a slight brake.

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Follow Up By: Member - Duncan W (WA) - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 09:31

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 09:31
Blue having said that I have two-wayed the truck bearing down on me - but still some distance back, that I'm pulling over so that he doesn't have to slow down and the road is his.

Driving a 1Hz unturbo'd Troopy teaches you to be patient, but those guys in their trucks are on a timeframe so I give them as much room and respect as I can.

Dunc
Make sure you give back more than you take

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FollowupID: 786173

Reply By: Ozrover - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 09:25

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 09:25
Hi all,

I have just had a chat to the fuel tanker driver delivering fuel to us & he asked about some travelers with camper trailers that passed him yesterday.

It seems that they passed him in the opposite direction at an estimated 120km/h! I won't repeat what his opinion of them was, as I'll get moderated!

Now that must of been fun for him with three trailers behind!

BTW he runs 65psi in all of his truck & trailer wheels.

AnswerID: 508628

Reply By: Echucan Bob - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 11:04

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 11:04
Ozrover, I totally agree with you. You thought you were preaching to the converted. When this subject came up a while back one contributor said he budgeted for a new windscreen every year so just went hell for leather anyway. Crikey, I budget for tyre loss on each trip too, but I don't deliberately go out and destroy them if they happen to survive the trip.

Mostly, the vehicles that don't slow down are being driven by someone who doesn't own the vehicle. I have clear memories of Troopies fanging along roads like the GCR at 130, barely in contact with the road surface, and a massive plume of dust and rocks that would embarrass Haley's Comet.

They 'own' the road, but not the vehicle.
AnswerID: 508640

Reply By: slave - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 11:43

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 11:43
I know exactly what you mean Jeff.
On our Simpson trip a few years ago we spent a big night at Mt Dare so had a late start the next day. We all (3 cars) slowed down for the oncoming traffic who flew past us throwing up plenty of stones as they went. We were lucky that only one of our group received a broken windscreen.
Evidently they very quickly bypassed Mt Dare too.

Mrs S
AnswerID: 508644

Reply By: Pathycop - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 15:41

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 15:41
Hi all. We just drive up from Mungo to Menindee via pooncarie. Mainly dirt roads varying from red sand to chunky gravel. I must admit I had no issues with all but one driver. Every one including cattle trucks etc were slowi g down moving over so no problem. Only issue was the guy in a 75 series passing me at well in excess of 100. Didn't even see him coming. No lights on. I was doing around 75-80 and feeling safe due to the sudden changes in road surface and he barreled past like i was standing still. Gave me about 2 meters of room and scared the crap out of me! Other than that a really nice drive!
Graeme
AnswerID: 508667

Reply By: Tonyfish#58 - Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 19:41

Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 19:41
I suppose the problem you now face is the amount of traffic on the well traveled routes.

During the peak on the PDR you would take a month to get to the tip if you slowed to 40 k for every vehicle coming your way.

You also have to cater for the Locals and workers who are not there for a holiday and time is money!

Personally on the PDR 80K in most areas is fine, some places 100k is fine with no risk of throwing stones, unless you tow a trailer then you should slow down. In my opinion they are the worst for bouncing stones back off the front into the traffic.

Regards Tony
AnswerID: 508687

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