Con­cern over district roads

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - New -

The con­di­tion of ‘lo­cal’ roads and the role it plays in re­gional mo­torist safety has con­tin­ued to draw crit­i­cism from Mem­ber for Lowan Emma Kealy.

Ms Kealy said she was frus­trated, claim­ing Roads Min­is­ter and Mem­ber for Western Vic­to­ria Jaala Pul­ford was dis­mis­sive in a be­lief that de­te­ri­o­ra­tion of district roads was hav­ing an im­pact on driver safety.

“The min­is­ter is say­ing road sur­faces can­not be blamed for our es­ca­lat­ing road toll and in­crease in mo­tor ve­hi­cle ac­ci­dents,” Ms Kealy said.

“Re­cently Vic­to­ria Po­lice con­firmed that poor weather and ‘road con­di­tions’ caused a mo­tor ve­hi­cle roll-over on Blue Rib­bon Road at Kal­kee.

“While thank­fully no-one was se­ri­ously in­jured in this crash, it is just an­other ex­am­ple of our poorly main­tained country roads putting lives at risk.

“For many of our lo­cal res­i­dents our re­gional road net­work is their daily work­place.

“Lo­cal truck driv­ers right­fully point out that the road net­work is their work­place.

“Ev­ery­one is en­ti­tled to a safe work­ing place and the de­te­ri­o­rat­ing con­di­tion of our lo­cal roads is cer­tainly not that.”

Ms Kealy said peo­ple in her elec­torate ‘con­stantly’ con­tacted her about cir­cum­stances on country roads.

“Some feel they are putting

their lives at risk go­ing about their daily lives or do­ing a job they love,” she said.

“This would not be tol­er­ated in any other work­place and it cer­tainly shouldn’t be tol­er­ated in western Vic­to­ria, which the RACV named as hav­ing the worst roads in the state.

“Many roads in Lowan are rid­dled with pot­holes, have crum­bling and muddy shoul­ders or are too nar­row, with lo­cals reg­u­larly re­port­ing dam­age to ve­hi­cles, agri­cul­tural ma­chin­ery and many near misses.

“To hear that the Vicroads main­te­nance fund is also be­ing plun­dered to re­pair road­side bar­ri­ers is a con­cern, par­tic­u­larly af­ter the botched roll-out by the La­bor govern­ment.

“As the roll­out of wire rope bar­ri­ers con­tin­ues it is ex­pected that main­te­nance costs will rise, fur­ther di­lut­ing money for ac­tual road works.

“Lowan res­i­dents just want our roads fixed prop­erly to give lo­cals the roads they are en­ti­tled to and de­serve.”

“Lo­cal truck driv­ers right­fully point out that the road net­work is their work­place. Ev­ery­one is en­ti­tled to a safe work­ing place and the de­te­ri­o­rat­ing con­di­tion of our lo­cal roads is cer­tainly not that” – Emma Kealy

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