'What a joke': Fury over 20km/h speed limit for Aussie tourist road

Melissa Buttigieg
News Reporter


A social media storm has erupted after news the speed limit on a popular stretch of Victoria’s Great Ocean Road has been reduced from 80km/h to just 20km/h.

The go-slow near the popular tourist spot, the Twelve Apostles, will be temporarily enforced all February, due to an influx of tourists during Chinese New Year.

Newly-erected warning signs in Mandarin also remind foreign motorists not to drive on the wrong side of the road.

The speed limit on a stretch of Victoria’s iconic Great Ocean Road has been reduced to just 20km/h. Source: 7 News

Sections of the Great Ocean Road in both directions of the Twelve Apostles visitor centre near Port Campbell have been temporarily reduced to 20km/h in a bid to reduce road incidents along the popular motorway.

A speed limit of 60km/h is also in place at Memorial Arch west of the visitor’s centre – a popular spot for visitors to stop and take photos every day. The speed limit is also reduced to the east of the visitor’s centre from the underpass.

The changes came after fed-up locals were forced to put up road signs in Mandarin to warn tourists of the notoriously-dangerous stretches along the Great Ocean Road.

Sections of the road near the Twelve Apostles visitor centre at Port Campbell have been temporarily reduced to 20km/h. Source: Melissa Buttigieg

More than 100 multilingual signs in place

VicRoads and Parks Victoria installed more than 100 multilingual signs including “drive on left” messages along the Great Ocean Road over the summer to remind foreign motorists to drive on the correct side of the road.

“No one wants to go on a holiday and end up in hospital or have a family member end up dead,” Sen-Sgt Asenjo told the Sunday Herald Sun.

“It you come off a regional road at high speed, there are good chances you are going to suffer some sort of trauma.”

VicRoads and Parks Victoria installed more than 100 multilingual signs along the Great Ocean Road (left), after locals at Apollo Bay near Victoria’s Great Ocean Road erected signs in Mandarin to warn tourists about dangerous stretches (right). Source: Supplied

Go-slow ‘makes sense’

One person on the 7News Melbourne Facebook page called the temporary go-slow “stupidly absurd” and suggested 50 km/h was a more appropriate speed.  

A few others agreed, commenting: “What a joke!”

However locals supported the move.

All these people whinging about it! Try living in the area, it’s like playing Russian roulette driving everyday. And it’s only for a couple of klm. get over it!” one wrote.

The go-slow near the Twelve Apostles will be temporarily enforced all February due to an influx of tourists during Chinese New Year. Source: 7 News

Another added: “I guess that makes sense because they will slow down to take pictures and hold up following traffic.

“I think it’s safer for locals to know they are dropping the speed so they don’t come around a corner @ 80kmh and hit a corsage of cars slowing down to take photos or videos of the landscape, sunsets and the likes.”

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