Gov­ern­ment looks at reader’s con­cerns about Heart’s Con­tent bar­rens

The Compass - - OPINION -

Since the pub­li­ca­tion of my last let­ter in the Nov. 18 edi­tion of The Com­pass (“Shoul­der too small along Heart’s Con­tent bar­rens”), I have heard back from the min­is­ter of trans­porta­tion’s staff. I won’t give any names here — he is the staff mem­ber of Trans­porta­tion and Works who called me after I sent the unan­swered email to the depart­ment dated Oct. 14 to Premier Paul Davis. In fact, I re­ceived a phone call just 20 min­utes after I for­warded the orig­i­nal email to Premier Paul Davis – that was quick! I also re­ceived an email from Premier Davis ad­vis­ing this would be in­ves­ti­gated and he copied it to sev­eral peo­ple in­clud­ing the Min­is­ter of Trans­porta­tion and Works. The em­ployee who called me drove the Heart’s Con­tent bar­rens and took pho­tos of the shoul­ders on Nov. 22, after which he left a voice­mail mes­sage at my home say­ing he agreed that there is an is­sue there and that sev­eral mem­bers of the depart­ment would be meet­ing on this with Min­is­ter David Brazil. I did re­ceive an email from Min­is­ter Brazil on the is­sue, but he did not re­ally com­mit to any­thing, only say­ing it would be in­ves­ti­gated. He also apol­o­gized for the lack of re­sponse to my email.

On Dec. 9, the same em­ployee of Trans­porta­tion and Works called me again and ad­vised that they have had a meet­ing on the is­sue and ba­si­cally the shoul­ders are smaller cause the road is

Like I said to him, had they acted on my email in mid-Oc­to­ber while the road was be­ing worked on, it could have been fixed by now!

now wider — where I don’t know, as I for one haven’t no­ticed any wider road in there! I gave him my opin­ion on that. The group at the meet­ing dis­agree that it could cause an ac­ci­dent with the ‘ridg­ing’ as they call it. They think the weather — rain I guess — will wash the gravel to the same level and they re­ally can’t do any­thing now un­til spring! Like I said to him, had they acted on my email in midOc­to­ber while the road was be­ing worked on, it could have been fixed by now! They also don’t feel that the dif­fer­ences in height would cause ac­ci­dents — I dis­agree. So, I said that is not go­ing to pre­vent some­one pulling over in the wrong place in there this win­ter and flip­ping their ve­hi­cle over and that I am not sat­is­fied with this. He is com­ing out again on the Dec. 20th week­end to take some more pho­tos and do some more follow up and will call me that day and I may meet him in there.

He also ad­vises that with the ‘Move Over’ leg­is­la­tion, if the shoul­der is not wide enough, peo­ple will not be tick­eted! So, he ad­vises to just move over as far to the right as pos­si­ble and in the case of the bar­rens, that’s not very far in some ar­eas! So, if any­one gets tick­eted in there, I guess you can get your ticket waived — I will be­lieve that when I see it! He also tells me that the is­sue with the unan­swered email should not hap­pen to any­one again, as those emails will now go di­rectly to the min­is­ter’s of­fice. Feel free to email on this is­sue. Maybe if enough of us did that, some­thing would get done. The email is tw@gov.nl.ca.

So, be safe out there, do not pull over very far —just in case there’s no shoul­der there — and es­pe­cially when the snow comes! If I do not hear from the trans­porta­tion em­ployee on the Dec. 20th week­end, I will be call­ing him again. I re­ally have my doubts folks if any­thing will be done in there in the win­ter months, but rest as­sured I will be on their cases again as soon as the spring hits! Maybe some of you will be too now that you all have the email ad­dress!

Be safe this win­ter on the Heart’s Con­tent bar­rens and watch out when pulling over for any­thing!

Oh, and our new Lib­eral mem­ber Steve Crocker has been versed on this is­sue and is also fol­low­ing it. Eileen Matthews writes

from New Per­li­can

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