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In the yellow line?

Category: Practical Advice Driving and Towing | Author: |  Date posted:  | Impressions: 16202   4053

Moving over into / driving in the yellow lane.

This is a controversial item. However, the legal interpretation as per the authorities is that 'you may not drive to the left of the yellow line, on the shoulder of the road or in the emergency lane at any point in time, other than in the case of an emergency.' 

Having said that the authorities have indicated that it would be most unlikely that a caravanner would be prosecuted for driving in the emergency lane in order to allow faster traffic to overtake. This 'un official concession' would only be applicable to single lane type of roads, and not on a highway or multiple lane roads.

If it so happens that the traffic flow slows down to such an extent that a caravan travelling in the yellow lane travels faster than the main flow of traffic, it could be construed to be overtaking other traffic in the emergency lane! In the event of an accident etc. that causes traffic to come to a halt, this could well mean that you will also be at a stand still within the yellow lane. If emergency vehicles are as a result obstructed, say no more!

In all cases fines for offences committed around the yellow lane zone carries stiff penalties, and R500 in some provinces or municipal area's could be considered cheap. I totally agree with other motorists towing a caravan with as far as his frustrations are concerned, and to add just one more point of contention to this issue: - When the yellow lane narrows or there is an obstruction preventing you from continuing, just try and get back into the flow of traffic! The abuse suffered and frustration endured outweighs the vexation of the faster travelers by far.

Having said that, all members of the Caravan Club of Southern Africa are bound by a code of conduct, and I quote rule three which has relevance: 'To cause as little inconvenience to other traffic as possible by keeping well to the left or giving way to faster traffic and to travel at a reasonable speed considering the condition and width of road etc.' Club members are thus encouraged to give way (yellow lane travel) but without endangering themselves or exposing themselves to prosecution. All Club members will adhere to this rule, but many will not travel in the yellow lane, mainly due to personal reasons.

I trust that this resolves the matter? I doubt it very much as we all have our own opinion on the matter. The legal aspect remains, no matter what our opinion may be.

Jan Heyneke

Caravan Club of Southern Africa.

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