Failure to observe road markings is one of the major causes of road accidents, Eng Emmanuel Aleti Abele, the inspector of motor vehicles at the Inspectorate of Vehicles in Naguru, has said.
“In most of the accidents where people die, a driver must have crossed the dividing center line. It’s a critical issue that today every driver must understand the meaning of these dividing center or road marking lines,” he told The Observer.
Abele added that most drivers cross the lines in areas where it is prohibited to overtake due to lack of knowledge about various road markings. He called upon the government to include traffic regulations in the education syllabus so Ugandans could understand road signs and reduce on the road accidents.
“Uganda’s education [system] should [teach] traffic rules from primary schools, and people [should] go to driving schools to only learn vehicle control,” he said.
It is from this observation that Mars Wheels will be briefly explaining to you various road markings.
BROKEN LINES DIVIDING LINE
Here, you might cross to the right-hand side to overtake, as long as there is enough space between yours and the vehicle you intend to overtake. Be sure there isn’t another vehicle overtaking you; otherwise, you might collide.
COMBINATION OF CONTINUOUS AND BROKEN DIVIDING LINE
If the line nearest to you is broken, it implies that it is okay to cross or overtake. But if the driver is on the side of continuous dividing line, it means they must not cross the line because they are entering into a sharp corner.
If the broken line is on the driver’s side, then they are allowed to overtake if the road is straight.
CONTINUOUS DIVIDING CENTER LINE
It’s mainly shaded yellow or white; meaning that the driver on a highway must not cross to the right-hand side to overtake. It also implies that overtaking is prohibited because visibility ahead is not clear, and might cause a head-on collision with another vehicle from the opposite direction.
It is mainly put or marked at the beginning of sharp curves or corners to notify motorists about how risky it is to overtake.
DOUBLE CONTINUOUS CENTER LINE
This means the degree of the curve or bend is so severe that the driver on the highway must not cross to the right-hand side to overtake because you can’t see anything ahead.
Also known as a ‘blind corner’, it means chances of causing an accident are very high once you overtake from such a point.
This line means you are approaching a busy area like a market or shopping mall where people could be crossing. There is a provision for zebra-crossing, and overtaking is prohibited.
“In the zigzag line, they always insert that sign for zebra crossing,” Abele said.
NO PARKING LINE
Usually put at the end of the roadside, this line prohibits vehicles driving beyond its space. Instead, the driver has to keep the vehicle within the main lane.
CLIMBING LINE ON STEEP HILLS
These lines are mainly designed on the highways to direct slow-moving vehicles. This allows faster-moving vehicles to overtake from such steep hills.