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Turkey - Asia



No diversions, no traffic signs, no cones

Trucks dominate that route, large trucks. Rules of the road are very much based on size. Just because it is the main road across a continent does not mean it is all metaled either. Sorry, getting technical. There is a noticeable absence of blacktop, with large lengths of road still being dirt. Pot holes abound. You know we complain about delays and 'cone city' when there are roadworks. Not a problem in Turkey. No diversions, no traffic signs, no cones, just a grader Motor graderin the middle of the road coming towards you. Now I say middle, which may give a sense of size which is not necessarily correct. Frequently, you have to drive off the road to avoid said oncoming grader. And then there is the queue of trucks behind the grader, either not able to get past, or choosing not to as a re-graded road is so much better.

In the UK, in 2013, there is a crises in road maintenance. So little maintenance has been carried out on the minor, non trunk routes that the roads are becoming severely potholed following a number of severe winters. The surface starts to break up, and more frost adds to the damage. A quick surface dressing at this stage will generally cure the problem. On a dirt road, life is so much simpler. Potholes get very large and frequent. Send out the man and his grader. A few passes and all the potholes are filled, the surface re-cambered and dressed. The traffic provides the compaction, so no need for a roller. All sorted.

Just to give you a idea of what a grader looks like, below are some images from Caterpillar or Cat as it is more normally known as these days. The graders in 1975 would have been made by Caterpillar, older versions of those shown, but fairly similar.

Motor Grader

Ivan Hurst in our coach Trans Asia 1977

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