Politics is a process by which groups of people make group decisions. It is associated with social relations involving authority and power, for the greater good of society. The concept in itself is a useful and worthy one, and exists for a respectable cause and for the full and fair benefit of society. There are two impressions of politics - the honourable kind, and the tainted kind. The honourable kind is associated with statesmanship, protection and legacy.
Following hard on the heels of the very successful and well publicised Warm Mix Asphalt (WMA) trials that where completed towards the end of 2010, National Asphalt is once again at the forefront of new asphalt technology in South Africa. This time the company is involved with High Modulus Asphalt (HiMA), which had its origin in France during the 1990s, and revolves largely around the preventing of rutting of asphalt pavements, especially in hot summer conditions. During October 2009 Colas South Africa hosted a SABITA HiMA Interest Group during a fact-finding tour to Reunion. Wynand Nortjé, Technical Manager of National Asphalt, represented the company on this tour.
With the exception of national roads and roads in a few local authorities the condition of South Africa's road network is less than satisfactory, giving rise to increased road accidents and excess user costs running into billions of rand per year. The fact that all is not well with our provincial roads is patently obvious and there is much evidence to this effect.
It is no secret that many people die on South African roads annually. What are we doing to reduce these fatalities? How many people have to die on our roads in order to take road safety seriously? Who is responsible for road safety? Is it the government?
Minibus taxis in South Africa are the most popular mode of public transport, mostly due to their flexibility and relative convenience over the other modes of public transport. The industry has shown resilience and has grown significantly over time amid many challenges. The informal nature of the industry has led to operators being in charge of most activities relating to operations, such as fare structure, fare types, routes, etc. Even though minibus taxis are popular and account for the majority of public transport trips, there are some aspects of operations that commuters are unhappy with, for example the high levels of fares, driving manner and the roadworthiness of some of the vehicles used.
At an intersection, the right turn is the movement with the highest accident potential and the lowest capacity. At the majority of intersections, right-turners must take gaps in opposing traffic. At a signalised intersection, drivers may be presented with a flashing green arrow to aid the right turn. The SADC Road Traffic Signs Manual (RTSM) describes the decision as whether or not to install a protected right-turn stage as the single most important factor when designing a signalised intersection.
The advent of commercial GPS technology and the inexpensive wireless transfer of bulk data via GPRS, coupled with a large installed base of vehicles tracked for security / recovery purposes, have facilitated anonymous real-time traffic speed monitoring on the country's roads. In this article the underlying technologies are explained and the development of a system which graphically displays average speeds and current journey times is described. Other applications, actual and potential, are also discussed.
The road classification system is the foundation of any access management program and has been an integral part of access management manuals in view of its importance in distinguishing between different facilities. The traditional approach followed in South Africa (and elsewhere) is based on Figure A, which indicates a continuum of mobility and access functions, thereby defining a Class 3 route as a route providing a mixture of mobility and accessibility, or a so-called activity route. In some contrast with this approach is the work of Brindle in Australia, who indicated freeways, arterials and collectors as "movement" routes and local roads providing the access function (see Figure B).
A study covering the first quarter of 2011 was done on Weigh-in-Motion (WIM) records of thousands of heavy vehicles at seven installations where large amounts of data were available for analysis. The purpose of the study was to quantify confidence in characteristics obtained from WIM measurements, such as axle loads, their standard equivalents (E80s), and magnitude and severity of prosecutable overloading.
This article provides an overview of the Accelerated Pavement Test (APT) conducted on a section of the Ben Schoeman freeway from December 2009 until May 2010. The research was initiated by BKS (Pty) Ltd and undertaken in cooperation with SANRAL (South African National Roads Agency Limited) as part of Work Package C of the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project (GFIP).
Salt damage in the form of blistering and surface disintegration of primed bases, and blistering, heaving, cracking and white and brown staining of seals (photo 1) and thin asphalt surfacings was formerly fairly common in southern Africa.
Emotions rise when people who used to park their cars for 'free' suddenly have to pay. A mere mention of the possibility of introducing parking charges in the work place is enough to get some people thinking about tendering resignations, or mass protests. Employees sometimes blame employers for locating work places in areas that can only be accessed by cars, thereby making parking space provision a 'right'. The plethora of car guards in South African urban areas is a reminder that parking can be a notable income generator. Parking charges are a proven urban management instrument that, if properly utilised, can enhance urban mobility solutions. This article investigates the state of the practice in South Africa, and seeks to answer: how much is fair to pay for parking?
Governments in both developed and developing economies are beginning to realise the importance and the benefits of an effective non-motorised transport (NMT) network. Identifying deficiencies in their respective existing transport systems and consequentially undertaking effective planning and realisation, are essential elements towards a sustainable NMT network. SSI Engineers and Environmental Consultants have pioneered a systematic, easy-to-implement approach to prioritising NMT projects which is sympathetic to the needs of citizens, and is founded on rational engineering criteria. This article describes the approach.
Global demand for natural resources is at an all-time high, driven primarily by the seemingly endless appetite of the East. With economies like China and India consistently maintaining significant growth rates in the region of 10% per annum whilst the rest of the world grows at 2-3% p.a., one can begin to understand the imbalance in global supply which is currently taking place. China is forecasting a shortfall of 100 million tonnes of coal by 2015, while India is forecasting a 112 million tonne shortfall over the same period. In order to maintain the traditional demands of the West and feed the growing requirements of the East, new supply regions will need to be secured.
With Pietermaritzburg being the capital of the KwaZulu-Natal Province, it had become necessary to upgrade the city's airport. The airport had gradually lost popularity over time due to growing dissatisfaction with the level of comfort on the Jetstream aircraft, perceptions of unreliability, diversions to Durban and some fears about safety. The ailing airport experienced a 25% decline in passenger numbers from 2006 to 2009.