M4 Safety Alert Thread

M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby fishwop » Thu Sep 15, 2011 9:03 pm

Because there is no M4 safety thread I am posting this here. It is 3 submissions I made on 3rd Aug 2011 to the RTA "Report a Hazard" site. Two of them are relevent to all motorway routes in any case.

1. Street name: M4 motorway
Town/suburb/locality: Prospect
Nearest identifying landmark: Above Reservoir Rd
Council area or suburb: Blacktown City Council
What type of location is it?: location-road
Nature of the problem: nature-construction-hazard-name-company-builder
Briefly describe the problem: The shoulder on the M4 eastbound has been closed and
barricaded with no signage, forcing bicycles into the 100km/h traffic.
Date of problem (day): 03 August 2011
Time problem was identified: 10 am to 3 pm
Weather condition: Dry
How has this hazard impacted on you?: I am forced into the left lane, which seems to upset
drivers who have to slow down or change lanes. With the shoulder being closed, it would be
much safer for cycling if part of the left lane were barricaded off for use by cyclists.


2. Street name: M4 Motorway (Westbound)
Town/suburb/locality: COLYTON
Nearest identifying landmark: Off ramp to Roper Rd/Erskine Park Rd
Council area or suburb: Blacktown City Council
What type of location is it?: location-road
Nature of the problem: nature-other
Briefly describe the problem: This off ramp is very dangerous on a
bicycle. The visibility from the rear is poor due to the curve of the
road and the presence of trees. It's a steep incline and so you
travel slowly, yet vehicles come from behind at great speed. Worst of
all is that the shoulders on both sides of the ramp (such that they are)
end halfway up the ramp, giving bicycles no option but to mix it with
the other traffic, many of whom get very upset at the presence of a
bicycle in such a place.
Date of problem (day): 03 August 2011
Time problem was identified: 10 am to 3 pm
Weather condition: Dry
How has this hazard impacted on you?: I can use another route via the M7
cycleway now that is re-opened but this is several km longer for my
commute. The M4 is a designated cycle route, but this off ramp does not
cater for cyclists at all. You really do need to put in some shoulders,
all the way up the ramp. Heading north on Roper Rd where the 2 lanes
merge into one, in traffic is quite hair raising as well. I really
don't like using this route.

3. Street name: M4 Motorway
Town/suburb/locality: Varies
Nearest identifying landmark: Varies
Council area or suburb: Varies
What type of location is it?: location-road
Nature of the problem: nature-placement-of-signage-street-furniture-bollard-or-barricades
Briefly describe the problem: When road crews are putting out their signs (speed limit
signs, etc) in the motorway shoulder, they frequently completely block the entire width of
the shoulder where there is absolutely no need for them to do this. I have spoken to these
workers about this on a couple of occasions.
Time problem was identified: 10 am to 3 pm
Weather condition: Dry
How has this hazard impacted on you?: This happened again today eastbound, about 3km west
of the Cumberland Highway interchange. I was very closely sideswiped by a truck
due to having to get around these signs they put up. Other times I have to wait for a break
in traffic and then go into the left lane, which is travelling at over 100km/h. Not a good
situation and entirely avoidable. The fellow today didn't think bicycles were allowed to
use the motorway.

A couple of days ago (Tues 13/9/11) a fellow from the RTA called. He was a friendly chap and said he rode a bike himself but would never do so on the M4 shoulder as it was too dangerous. I pointed out that it a designated cycle route in the RTA's maps and perfectly safe provided a rider was able to keep well away from other traffic.

The outcome was as follows -

1. "We have to close shoulders sometimes, sorry, but we have put signage up at this location" (this was done within 24 hours in fact).
2. "The off ramp to Roper Rd/Erskine Park Rd is soon to be resurfaced, but I don't think they are putting in shoulders, as cars take priority" (yes he did say this).
3. "I have sent a memo to all road crews that they should not block motorway shoulders with their signage, and should be aware that bicycles use the shoulders".

None of the above is in writing, just over the phone. One out of three is better than nothing, I suppose.
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by BNA » Thu Sep 15, 2011 9:59 pm

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Re: M5 Safety Alert Thread

Postby wombatK » Thu Sep 15, 2011 9:59 pm

fishwop wrote:Because there is no M4 safety thread I am posting this here. It is 3 submissions I made on 3rd Aug 2011 to the RTA "Report a Hazard" site...

Thanks for trying fishwop. An obvious response to the issue on the Roper Rd exit would be to trim the trees back a few more minutes from the edge. That would positively contribute to cyclists safety. Wonder if making that suggestion would get some better traction ?

With regard to the work on Reservoir Rd, the closure was pretty heavy-handed. If in fact the whole shoulder was needed (e.g. for access by work vehicles), there would not have been sufficient room to allow movement of the driver or other workers and materials around the vehicles in safety - the adjacent lane should have been partly closed. If there were sufficient room for movement of workers, that space could easily have been shared with cyclists e.g. on a stop and proceed with caution basis. The RTA should be looking more closely at the OH&S issues around this - and their liability in such situations. Perhaps a follow-up request for the traffic management plan for the works might give them reason to think it through better next time.

But given the RTA's miserable track record with closure of the M2 to cyclists during the re-construction, I wouldn't hold out too much hope. Nevertheless, worth bowling them line & length on it.
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby Boognoss » Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:48 pm

fishwop wrote:Because there is no M4 safety thread I am posting this here.


Actually, good idea so here it is.
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby thepj » Fri Sep 16, 2011 4:08 pm

i live just up from roper rd on/off ramp it deffently is a hair ride though there espically over the bridge were the lane ends and the trucks and cars fight over the end.
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby fishwop » Fri Sep 16, 2011 7:57 pm

Boognoss wrote:Actually, good idea so here it is.


Thank you kindly good sir. I had thought it was because the M4 is almost, but not quite, bereft of riders. Car is king out here, you see.

Re Roper Rd, I did mention the trees in my submission, surely I shouldn't have to do so again????

It is dismaying that the M4 west of Granville is on the Western Sydney cycling routes maps issued by the RTA (most of which only extend as far as Pendle Hill/Girraween), but making it safe for cyclists to actually use is seemingly too much to ask. There is a facility in place to report cycling hazards but even though acknowledging them it seems they won't fix them, even during forthcoming roadworks at the very location. I will continue to travel 4km out of my way via the M7 cycleway and Woodstock Ave (the latter of which itself leaves a bit to be desired). At least the on-ramp heading east is OK.
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M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby Boognoss » Fri Sep 16, 2011 9:23 pm

fishwop wrote:
Boognoss wrote:Actually, good idea so here it is.


Thank you kindly good sir. I had thought it was because the M4 is almost, but not quite, bereft of riders. Car is king out here, you see.


Mate don't mention the car being king. I have distant fond memories of being able to get to work in under and hour door to door on the M2. Now less km, a lot more traffic, more climbing and 20 mins more, etc.

One day we'll have a need for an M2 thread (mixed blessing but if it's needed it'll mean we can ride on the frisking thing again......)

;-)



Cheers, Simon

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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby TimW » Sat Nov 19, 2011 12:59 pm

Signs posted indicate a social family ride between 9am and 1pm for those heading out Sunday,Might be plenty of ppl to avoid :shock: :shock:
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby 93360 » Wed Nov 23, 2011 12:37 pm

The last time I was passing through westbound past granville i think they were working on a new section of offroad cycleway? (fingers crossed) however the detour currently in place is partially blocked/restricted with construction fencing just after Ledger Rd in Merrylands mear the footbridge so be careful around there.. it was a couple of weeks ago though so correct me if it's been removed.
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby Rockford » Wed Nov 23, 2011 8:52 pm

The construction work near Parramatta on the M4 is this going to be a cycle way, the fencing looks very cycle-way-ish.
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby 93360 » Mon Dec 05, 2011 2:46 pm

Rockford wrote:The construction work near Parramatta on the M4 is this going to be a cycle way, the fencing looks very cycle-way-ish.


It's not been 2 weeks since my own post about the safety hazard "just after Ledger Rd in Merrylands near the footbridge"..
So I was going westbound on the M4 route and at about 8PM I went past and admired the new section of cycle path (running from Fox St to the foot bridge after Ledger Rd, still fenced off but fairly complete) and immediately afterwards is that fairly fast downhill section on a narrow footpath into Maru Reserve.
Although I've been through there a few times before, this was my first time cycling in the evening/night and with my headlights not on full brightness I went over an unsighted bump in the footpath (towards the bottom of the slope) at speed which caused me to run off to the edge of the pavement (which is about an inch higher than the grass) before my wheels slipped down onto the wet grass and my bike slid out from under me.
After a few tumble rolls the only damage done was a slight abrasion to my left elbow and a fairly scuffed tip on my bike's left bar end which was a bit surprising as nothing else seemed to have any damage so fortunately I was able to continue my ride home albeit at a much slower pace. [Edit: now in daylight I can see that the leather on the left rear of my saddle also has some scuffing]
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The exact place where it all happened can be seen just after the 70km mark from my GPS trace, zoomed in you will notice a zig zag trace in Mru Reserve where I back tracked to a bench after the fall:
http://www.endomondo.com/workouts/30342221?ref=nf
The bicycle path detour really couldn't be upgraded any sooner.
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby CommuRider » Tue Dec 27, 2011 3:41 pm

Saw the yet to be opened bike path whilst driving on the M4...near Merrylands. It looks great and promising! Nothing but a strong encouragement for more cyclists - can imagine the M4 cars crawling while cyclists pass them by. Can't wait for it to open :D
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby 93360 » Wed Dec 28, 2011 12:39 am

Passed by the Church St/Woodville Rd M4 westbound entrance today and noticed that the previously locked gate with directions to use detour has now been reopened! No more narrow back passage ways? My guess is that they may be working on the next section of the cycle path (where I had my accident a few weeks ago, did not go that direction today) and with that new section visible from the highway complete there is no longer any need for the detour due to the shoulder becoming free of construction hazards and available to cyclists again :)
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby MoeJoe » Wed Jan 18, 2012 8:53 pm

Hi all,

I'd like to extend my commute a bit a start near South Wentworthville.
Has anyone used the new section on the M4 as yet or is it easy enough now to start near Centenary rd and hook up to the M4 path underneath the freeway?
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby Thunderthighs » Thu Feb 02, 2012 1:16 pm

Eastbound (AT) 5:45am today a dark blue ford laser sedan was parked/dumped on the shoulder about 1k out from the Westmead exit.

Saw it in the nick of time and missed it, but it gave me a fair ol' adrenaline rush!
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby meridaman » Sat Jul 28, 2012 5:27 pm

There has been a Blue Sedan parked on the M4 westbound between Roper Rd an Mamre Rd since last week, anyone know what the "taper" and other similar markings mean westbound near Roper Road?
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby Wollemi » Tue Feb 19, 2013 4:01 pm

I guess the safety alert is to take care when in the vicinity of on-ramps on the M4, and breakdown lanes...

"Out of respect - this thread is now being closed." So said the mods at the other thread. So I guess the SMH is not respectful? -

Last week, Marc Simone sat down to write an article about his impending 4000km bike ride from the Blue Mountains to Darwin. The journey would be a daunting challenge for the former pre-school teacher turned IT professional, who admitted more than once that he was far from a professional cyclist. But the prospect of pedalling that far was not as confronting to the 45-year-old as the cause he was raising funds for: homelessness among Australia's children.

Now, Mr Simone's friends are planning to complete the epic ride without their mate, who was knocked off his bike and killed during a training ride in Sydney's west at the weekend. The father-of-two had set off from his home in Winmalee in the Blue Mountains early on Saturday morning. Just after 7.30am, he was riding east in the breakdown lane of the M4 at Emu Plains when he was in a collision with a Jeep Cherokee and was flung from his bike. He died at the scene.

"It's a hell of a tragedy," Mr Simone's friend Keith Roberts said on Tuesday. "I think the shock is starting to wear off and reality is setting in. "Mark wanted to do this ride. I don't know how we're going to do it, but we are going to make sure that the ride does happen in his name."

Mr Simone had set himself a target of raising $100,000 for Mission Australia during the four-week ride, which he was due to start in April.

Early last week his total was just shy of $2000. His children, 13-year-old Julia and 12-year-old Marc Anthony, were the first to chip in, each donating $20 towards their father's cause.

"Good luck daddy. I'm happy that you decided to help the homeless children," wrote Julia on his Everyday Hero fundraising page. In the wake of Mr Simone's death, donations have ballooned out to more than $10,000. Now, his friends are hoping that donations will hit the $100,000 target as a legacy to their mate.


Police said the 23-year-old male driver of the Jeep stopped at the crash scene and called emergency services.


http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/its-a-hell-of ... 2eoss.html

~~~~~~~~~~

This one strikes out at me just that little more, as I have lived in Winmalee for over 20 years, am the same age as this man, and have done some ultra-long, multi-week, activities, starting out my training rather inexperienced and naively in cycle-touring/bushwalking/sea-kayaking. Yet I never knew him, and never heard of Marc Simone until today. : (
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby isabella24 » Sun Jul 07, 2013 5:31 pm

Part of the M4 path has been dug up. I think it's between Burnett st & where the new part of the M4 path starts. It's gravel and dirt and not real good on a road bike with 23mm tyres.
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby xavdav » Mon Jan 06, 2014 10:14 pm

Right after Mays Hill on ramp going eastbound there is a concrete barrier and cyclist are directed to the left of the barrier for about 60 meters in a narrow lane that is usually full of rubbish and has also two grates. About six weeks ago a car or truck knocked the last two concrete elements of the barrier and they were placed on the left side while two big bags of filling (sand?) were placed on the right. those bags were about a meter wide and of course narrowed the width of the lane making it easy for a cyclist to clip.
This morning I noticed that the concrete blocks have been put back where they belong, but the bags of fillings have been place on the left inside the lane, which effectively reduce the width of the lane to about 30 centimeters making in even easier for a cyclist to clip :shock: .
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby g-boaf » Mon Jan 27, 2014 10:04 pm

Light horse interchange this evening, a motorbike rider using the on-ramp to go east towards Parramatta either got clipped by a car or lost control on his/her own and clouted one of the signs.

As I went overhead on the M7 cycleway, they had the rider in an Ambulance. Hope whoever it is, they are okay. The accident didn't look too nice. :(
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby RideLikeTheWind » Mon Feb 17, 2014 9:32 pm

xavdav wrote:Right after Mays Hill on ramp going eastbound there is a concrete barrier and cyclist are directed to the left of the barrier for about 60 meters in a narrow lane that is usually full of rubbish and has also two grates. About six weeks ago a car or truck knocked the last two concrete elements of the barrier and they were placed on the left side while two big bags of filling (sand?) were placed on the right. those bags were about a meter wide and of course narrowed the width of the lane making it easy for a cyclist to clip.
This morning I noticed that the concrete blocks have been put back where they belong, but the bags of fillings have been place on the left inside the lane, which effectively reduce the width of the lane to about 30 centimeters making in even easier for a cyclist to clip :shock: .


This has now been cleared. Do watch the rubbish behind the barrier though.
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby RideLikeTheWind » Fri Mar 07, 2014 8:29 pm

Prospect exit - truck tyre shredded everywhere. Makes crossing the merge lane pretty dangerous. Take care all!
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby isabella24 » Sun Mar 09, 2014 6:55 pm

RideLikeTheWind wrote:Prospect exit - truck tyre shredded everywhere. Makes crossing the merge lane pretty dangerous. Take care all!


You ride up the ramp at prospect? What's it like - I've been wondering whether to ride the M4 from wallgrove rd to prospect highway as part of my commute, but am wondering if it's really the best way to go.
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby RideLikeTheWind » Mon Mar 10, 2014 9:06 pm

isabella24 wrote:
RideLikeTheWind wrote:Prospect exit - truck tyre shredded everywhere. Makes crossing the merge lane pretty dangerous. Take care all!


You ride up the ramp at prospect? What's it like - I've been wondering whether to ride the M4 from wallgrove rd to prospect highway as part of my commute, but am wondering if it's really the best way to go.


No, I ride from Penrith to Burwood - I noticed the tyre the other day and it caused a bit of concern for me as I crossed the lane. I like the M4 - I know it is dangerous because of speed and drivers, but the size of the shoulder makes me less nervous than riding on some roads (went the Hume once - and only once).

Tyre is cleared now, BTW. :)
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby sankari » Wed Mar 19, 2014 11:05 pm

Bad news. The M4 cycleway at Burnett St in Mays Hill has been completely blocked by fencing.

Good news. It's because they're finally building the missing segment. I was using my non-bicycle form of transportation, and couldn't investigate, but the eastern section from Burnett St to Ledger Rd looks complete. The western section from Burnett St to Rita St is blocked by fencing, presumably because they're digging up the existing footpath. This will probably remain blocked until completion though.
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Re: M4 Safety Alert Thread

Postby Hergest » Mon Apr 28, 2014 8:09 pm

sankari wrote:Bad news. The M4 cycleway at Burnett St in Mays Hill has been completely blocked by fencing.

Good news. It's because they're finally building the missing segment. I was using my non-bicycle form of transportation, and couldn't investigate, but the eastern section from Burnett St to Ledger Rd looks complete. The western section from Burnett St to Rita St is blocked by fencing, presumably because they're digging up the existing footpath. This will probably remain blocked until completion though.


I've ridden this new section for the last 2 days, for me being on the far side of Guildford West it's great as it means i no longer have to go down past the Guildford and Merrylands railway stations and then Woodville Road pavement to get to Olympic Park, Rhodes and further on. Using the bus lane down Sherwood Road then through a back street or two takes me to the end of the cycleway at Coleman street at Hilltop. Then down on the new section which goes all the way through to the M4 path under that vile Parra Road/Woodville,Church St, M4 junction.

The only thorn in the ointment is the little bit of Coleman Street to navigate as that's busy but it's a small price to pay.
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