17 February 2017
FRA CLARIFIES ITS POSITION ON ROAD WORKS DURING PEAK HOUR
With the ageing road infrastructure, a certain degree of road work during peak hours is inevitable says Fiji Roads Authority Chief Executive Officer John Hutchinson.
However Mr Hutchinson also adds that FRA has reinforced to its contractors that works on major arterials is not to occur during heaviest peak hours unless unavoidable, however due to the volume of traffic now using our roads, some disruption will occur.
This follows after some concerns raised by the members of the public as to why some road works are conducted during peak hours when there is heavy traffic flow.
Mr Hutchinson said that FRA is not pleased with the contractor carrying out work during the early morning peak along some of Suva’s busiest roads as reported in the media and will be addressing this matter with the contractor. However he says that it is important the public understand that peak periods are stretching beyond the usual hours as increase in car ownership has more people out and about day and night.
“We do not have the luxury of having designated ‘peak hours’ and ‘off peak hours’ that we used to experience five years ago. The reality now is, you have ‘very high peak hours’ and ‘peak hours’ from 5am to 7pm and ‘off peak’ hours’ from after 7pm to 5am.
He said the FRA will need a longer term plan to compliment a growing economy and increasing car ownership and they are working with their stakeholders to start to lay the foundations for this long term thinking.
“We are also working closely with the Land Transport Authority and the Fiji Police Force to help manage traffic on a daily basis and deal with any incidents which cause holdups.”
Whilst the convenient option for motorists is that all road works be done at night, Mr Hutchinson says that the night road works are generally done on roads that are used by heavy daytime traffic.
“Road works at night needed more reflective traffic management signs, large light trailers, variable message sign trailers, reflective personal protective equipment, light wands, vehicles with certified flashing lights and so forth.”