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N8/N25/N40 - Dunkettle Interchange [under construction]



  • Registered Users Posts: 300 ✭✭Live at Three

    It has been a pleasure following this forum over the last three years, reading about traffic, merging and efficiency while experiencing it first-hand every day, I have to admit that my way of thinking about driving has changed, and hopefully for the better after reading so many different insights from those in the know on here.

    I have changed my mentality around "letting people in". I have become much more generous to people who want to merge in front of me and not treating it as a zero sum game where I lose out if I let someone pass, even if they seem to have skipped a few places.

    This morning, a guy coming from n25 flashed his hazards to thank me for "letting him in" before the tunnel. I know that he meant well and it was a nice gesture, but I would almost go as far as saying that I would rather he didn't flash the hazards, as that suggests that he's still in the mindset that letting people merge is doing someone else a favour, and something that you can chose not to do if you don't feel like it.

    A few weeks ago I witnessed one of the many crash-and-pile-ups that happens at the Bloomfield area. It happened as a result of several people driving too close to the car in front...and for what reason? To stop someone else from getting in? I was very close to this and it frightened the bejeesus out of me. It happened in a split-second.

    I feel that now most merges would flow a lot better if everyone left simply a lot of space in front of them, regardless of which road has priority. Especially as it's free flow now, there are no red lights, just merging points. I have a utopian vision in my mind of wonderfully efficient drivers zippering and merging like synchronised swimmers, or teeth in gears, going at a steady cruise and never having to touch the brakes, or flash the hazards.

    Another thing I've stopped thinking about is changing lanes. I used to keep an eye on both lanes and see if I could predict which one would move faster, and do one or two dodgy lane changes between the tunnel and Bloomfield. I now regard this a stupid behaviour. Now when I go from M8 to nN40 I stay in the right lane until I get past the Bloomfield interchange. This may be controversial (so please don't kill me) as I know that people hate a driver who stays in the overtaking lane for no apparent reason. However, if I go back into left lane after tunnel when there's a space, I know that I'll end up being part of the jam that forms when the rochestown people try to merge, and in order to free up this merge I'll have to move out to the right again. I hate changing lanes in this area, as it is dangerous and contributes to more traffic.

    To be clear, I'm not holding people up by staying in the overtaking lane in this area, I still move faster than the lane to my left so I'm still using the lane to overtake. I'm still moving at a speed similar to the car in front of me, the only difference is that I'm leaving a big gap.

    This approach usually works fine. I've actually noticed other cars in my lane taking the exact same approach, leaving a gap in front of them and allowing rochestown people to peel in from the left. Whereas I used to be of the opinion that "ok I'll let one of them in and then close up the gap" now I don't care if two or three drivers slip in in front of me, as it's helping to free up the overall merge. I do occasionally get impatient drivers behind me though, glaring at me from under their hoodies, nervously zig sagging a foot or two away from my ass trying to find a way around me.

    I love the new interchange. My arrival time at work is now up to 20 mins earlier than it was pre-covid. I look forward to safer and more efficient driving!

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,870 ✭✭✭Chris_5339762

    Someone rear ended me last year at Bloomfield writing off my car. I was fine, so was he, but he was tailgating and couldn't stop in time when I needed to brake for a queue of traffic.

    At the Kinsale Road flyover, same thing nearly happened yesterday. Cars in front stopped suddenly, I needed to brake (plenty of space), person behind me way too close and nearly rear ended me. I could see his car move from side to side as he weight anchor. Very close.

    From now on I'm pottering behind a lorry in the left lane when I'm commuting. Not worth the hassle of being in the overtaking lane, its absolutely ridiculous the tailgating going on now.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,048 ✭✭✭niloc1951

    From The RSA website

    'Failure to leave appropriate distance between you and the vehicle in front'

    3 penalty points on payment of the fine or 5 penalty points on conviction.

    The fine is €160 if paid within 28 days of the offence or €240 if paid in the subsequent 28 days. A third payment option is also available

    What's needed is unmarked Roads Policing cars pulling in offenders daily. If done effectively it should teach people that it's not worth partaking in the practice of polishing the rear bumper of the car ahead.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,022 ✭✭✭mcburns07

    We could do with some policing on the roads full stop, virtually non existent these days.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,870 ✭✭✭Chris_5339762

    Apart from the occasional speed van monitoring eastbound traffic just before the Douglas exit I've never seen a single bit of enforcement of anything on the south ring in the mornings or the evenings.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,453 ✭✭✭FishOnABike

    Could easily be enforced with a few fixed cameras on the gantrys along the road.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,481 ✭✭✭Hibernicis

    While nothing to do with the interchange, tailgating is very unnerving, and a classic example of the worst of macho behaviour on the roads. It can be incredibly intimidating. And it appears to be ever more frequent. It is very difficult to deal with sensibly, other than adhering to the speed limit and slowing safely if necessary to ameliorate the risk. Unfortunately this usually leads to further aggressive behaviour, flashing headlights, beeping horns, swerving etc.

    I wonder are there any stats for penalty points issued for 'Failure to leave appropriate distance between you and the vehicle in front'. I have never heard of anybody getting points or bring charged for this.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,336 ✭✭✭RetroEncabulator

    Would love to see how many people have ever been prosecuted for that ... I'm guessing zero.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,575 ✭✭✭Charles Babbage

    It should be possible to enforce this by camera and other things too. Have a "smart" camera tag examples for review and ticket those involved. This type of approach has a role to play.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,440 ✭✭✭Markcheese

    To be honest it would be easy enough to set up cameras on gantries on the n40 ,dunkettle + approaches, anpr would take care of identification ,and software could identify which cars are driving erratically, tail gating ,soeeding , weaving , lane hogging, on phones or texting , and it could be reviewed by real people . Before a ticket was sent out

    Slava ukraini 🇺🇦

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,495 ✭✭✭KrisW1001

    ANPR and cameras are already in place on N40.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,048 ✭✭✭niloc1951

    As the old saying goes 'Where there's a will there's a way'

    Unfortunately, despite all the political and Garda rhetoric about driving safer there appears to be very little will to seriously address the problem of pi$$ poor driving behaviour on our roads. Apart from the odd short-lived 'slow down' and anti-drink/drug-driving campaign

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,870 ✭✭✭Chris_5339762

    The trouble is I don't believe it is "piss poor driving". The people doing it are likely competent drivers, but choose to be terrible on the roads and bully everyone else. Thats harder to solve.

    But the police etc here have absolutely no interest in doing anything about it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,048 ✭✭✭niloc1951

    I spent a few minutes this morning looking at the various cameras covering the interchange.

    While there were queues on the M8 to N40 and N25 to N40 links the speed on the actual N40 (the 100m before the tunnel) and into the tunnel seemed very slow, maybe only 40 km/h, yet the Bloomfield interchange was flowing freely.

    Perhaps if drivers moved a bit quicker into and through the tunnel the queues on the M8 and N25 might not be so bad

    Interestingly, number six in the list of the top ten reasons for people failing their test is Not making sufficient Progress on the Straight

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,870 ✭✭✭Chris_5339762

    Nah, its the wholly unnecessary 2-into-1 and then the subsequent merge into the with the Little Island traffic on the N25 slip into the tunnel southbound that is causing the problems there. And the result is some people are going down to the Dunkettle Roundabout, doing a loop of it, and then accessing the tunnel via the N25E to N40S loop - which is causing some delays again on the M8S.

    I know that there are constraints there, but that 2-into-1 is just ridiculous I think. Would flow better without it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,048 ✭✭✭niloc1951

    'some people are going down to the Dunkettle Roundabout, doing a loop of it, and then accessing the tunnel via the N25E to N40S loop - which is causing some delays again on the M8S'

    When I was watching this morning there was not a lot of traffic on that loop joining the M8.

    Definitely, a significant contributor factor in the queuing up to the merge points was the slow movement of traffic after the merge points and onwards to the tunnel. Think of a funnel with a tap in the outlet restricting the output flow.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,048 ✭✭✭niloc1951

  • Registered Users Posts: 707 ✭✭✭cork_south

    At peak times it took less time to get to the tunnel south bound from East Cork before the DKI upgrade even though you had to go through 2 sets of lights, 1 for the Little Island and 1 at the Interchange.

    The upgrade has mainly been a success for all other traffic flows though tunnel northbound at peak is still pretty bad.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,547 ✭✭✭AugustusMinimus

    I keep reading that the NRR is now the only other solution to resolve traffic here.

    How will an NRR help with N25 - Tunnel traffic. It will hardly remove any traffic from this movement.

  • Registered Users Posts: 707 ✭✭✭cork_south

    It could possibly help remove commuter traffic heading to Ballincollig or Macroom direction I suppose.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 789 ✭✭✭mydiscworld

    So what's causing the East Cork backlog into tunnel, the merging lanes before the tunnel?

  • Registered Users Posts: 707 ✭✭✭cork_south

    4 lanes (2 from Little Island, 2 from N25) with heavy traffic at peak times merging to single lane on a bend before the tunnel.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,547 ✭✭✭AugustusMinimus

    Would be quite a detour although likely faster given traffic levels on both routes.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,048 ✭✭✭niloc1951

    AFAIK, the Northern Ring Road referred to in the Examiner article is the proposed one for Midleton to relieve the congestion in the town of Midleton. There's already a lot of industry and housing on the existing bit which now ends on the L7630

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,440 ✭✭✭Markcheese

    Pretty much it ,the design of the merge points isnt great , moving the n25 merge back was a good idea , but the little island merge is very long , and the final merge is right before the bend ,

    It could be tweaked

    Slava ukraini 🇺🇦

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,550 ✭✭✭veryangryman

    Looking at thread title. Is the works still ongoing

  • Registered Users Posts: 21,261 ✭✭✭✭Mushy

    Nothing really much construction wise, more likely landscaping details. Weird not getting the weekly update

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,547 ✭✭✭AugustusMinimus

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,104 ✭✭✭hans aus dtschl

    I'm not sure many here are saying it's the solution to the Dunkettle Interchange? Rather plenty people (me included) are saying that capacity expansion of the N40 (for instance at Douglas) isn't a sensible use of money. The N40 north is needed for N/M20 to Dunkettle link, and it's needed for the N/M20 to Ballincollig link, but it's not going to solve N25/N40 traffic issues.

    The issue isn't the DkI, the issue is reams of one-off-housing with no sustainable connectivity or alternative connectivity.

    I'd like to take a second to point out that the same public representatives who are bemoaning the traffic on the N25 are pushing for new large housing developments to be built and connected right onto the N25 (using public money, no less!). They're in no way a trustworthy source of information or transportation ideas. I'd go further and say that some of them haven't got a clue what they're talking about and are best ignored.

    The cheerleaders and facilitators of the DkI issue are the same ones complaining about the mess they're very actively creating. If I was in the NTA or TII I'd be absolutely fed up of hearing their nonsense.

    By way of explanation, development after development is getting approved in the County LA area with no facilitating infrastructure. Ballinglanna, Waterrock, Adamstown, Blossomhill, Broomfield, Castleredmond etc etc etc. Each of these is promising that there will be no significant increase in car traffic, in order to get approval. Each one is getting cheered on by the council, because houses are so desperately needed. Each one is adding lots of additional traffic onto the N25.

    Even on a basic level, the same council took the planning regulator to court for trying to stop them building a surface outlet mall in Carrigtohill!

    "I'm pro unsustainable growth in car traffic, and someone needs to solve the mess I'm creating"

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,048 ✭✭✭niloc1951

    That may be, but the article in the Irish Examiner, referred to the Midleton Northern Relief Road (Midleton NRR) and concentrated on issues arising from traffic grinding to a halt at peak times in Midleton and around Carrigtwohill, while queues from that direction into the Jack Lynch Tunnel have worsened since the Dunkettle junction’s €220m upgrade