NSW trials variable speed signs to help improve safety and traffic

Variable Speed Limit (VSL) signs have been trialled along a new southbound overtaking lane on the Newell Highway in NSW.

The new technology allows speed zones to be immediately changed, while also removing risks to traffic control workers.

NSW Minister for Regional Transport and Roads, Paul Toole, said the moves would save users about 25 minutes of travel time along the highway’s length, with 15 of the planned 30 lanes already either delivered or under construction.

“This technology has the capability of changing speed zones instantly by a computer application, eliminating the need for traffic control workers to manually change the speed signs, and affording motorists improved visibility of lit-up signs in poor light conditions and wet weather,” Mr Toole said.

The latest 1.5km overtaking lane at Peak Hill is the ninth new overtaking lane delivered by the Newell Highway Program Alliance since it was formed in January 2019.

“We are excited to have delivered the Peak Hill overtaking lane within four months, despite eight days lost due to wet weather,” Mr Toole said.

“Its completion is hot on the heels of the opening of a northbound overtaking lane at Telescope, which was completed and open to traffic in mid-April.”

A minimum total of 45km of new overtaking lanes along the Newell Highway will be built over four years to improve safety, reduce travel times, allow more accurate travel planning and improve freight productivity.