Pro­posed speed change on roads

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - News -

Vic­to­ria Po­lice and mu­nic­i­pal of­fi­cers have used a St Arnaud fo­rum to ex­plain de­tails of a pro­posal to use North­ern Grampians Shire roads to trial a speed re­duc­tion from 100kmh to 70kmh on un­sealed roads.

The ‘Slow Down and Sur­vive’ fo­rum was at St Arnaud Town Hall last week.

Wim­mera po­lice Su­per­in­ten­dent Paul Mar­getts said the North­ern Grampians mu­nic­i­pal­ity had been pro­posed as a trial site be­cause 80 per­cent of the shire’s roads were un­sealed.

“Vic­to­ria Po­lice is com­mit­ted to re­duc­ing deaths and se­ri­ous in­juries on our state’s roads, in­clud­ing in the coun­try,” he said. “In fact, the chance of dy­ing on a coun­try road is four times higher than met­ro­pol­i­tan ar­eas.

“A head-on crash at 100kmh re­sults in a 95 per­cent chance of death. That drops dra­mat­i­cally to 10 per­cent for 70kmh. On un­sealed roads, in­con­sis­tent sur­faces, un­marked lanes and no safety bar­ri­ers ex­ac­er­bate the risks of speed.

“That is why Vic­to­ria Po­lice wanted to start a con­ver­sa­tion around ap­pro­pri­ate speeds for un­sealed coun­try roads.”

Ear­lier this year, the call for an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into chang­ing speed lim­its on some un­sealed roads across the state led to Mem­ber for Lowan Emma Kealy de­scrib­ing the idea as ‘lazy pol­icy’.

Ms Kealy ar­gued it rep­re­sented a State Govern­ment ‘band-aid’ fix to com­pen­sate for cut­ting $160-mil­lion from main­tain­ing coun­try roads and bridges across coun­try Vic­to­ria.

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