Saturday September 13, 2008
Beware of Terengganu danger spots
By R.S.N. MURALI
KUALA TERENGGANU: The Terengganu Road Safety Department has issued a warning to roadusers to exercise caution when negotiating the sharp bends known as Viet-namese Curve and Bermuda Triangle during the Hari Raya exodus.
Department director Farrell Charles Rasu said the bends had claimed several lives in previous years and were categorised as dangerous.
He said that Vietnamese Curve was along km26 of the Kuantan-Kuala Terengganu road near Pantai Kelulut and Bermuda Triangle was situated in Jabor.
“I was told that the Pantai Kelulut stretch was labelled as Vietnamese Curve after an accident claimed three members of a Vietnamese family two decades ago.
The Bermuda Triangle, he said, came about when locals claimed that vehicles went missing mysteriously when negotiating the corner in the early 1980s.
“I believe it is all superstition, even though people have told me that Vietnamese Curve is haunted.
“We are studying the principles of engineering, accident analysis, road layout and geometry aspects of the stretches.
“However, we want motorists to be careful when using the stretches during the balik-kampung period,” he said in an interview here recently,
Rasu said the department had evaluated accidents on both stretches by looking at driver behaviour and found that high speed was a major factor.
“The finding is based on estimation of tyre grind and slide, including the coefficient of friction, and it was made known that the drivers had been unable to control their vehicles,” he said.
Rasu said the bends had been placed on the department’s radar for the balik-kampung period.
“We have requested assistance from the Public Works Department, Road Transport Department and police to monitor the stretches,” he said.
Rasu said that safety devices, flexible posts and reflectors had been placed along Vietnamese Curve but motorist still tended to speed.
“We are looking at suggestions to halve accidents on the stretch, including erecting an illuminated warning sign a few kilometres from the bend,” he said.
For the Bermuda Triangle, Rasu said the department had proposed that it be adequately lit and more flexible posts installed.
“I always divulge facts and figures on technical grounds in regard to causes of accidents in the areas,” he added.
Rasu also revealed that dangerous stretches in Besut and Setiu were being monitored closely.