Fixing country roads will save more lives

The reduced road toll for 2018 is a credit to Victorian motorists and police.

But any death or major injury on Victoria’s roads is one too many.

Each death or serious injury on Victoria’s roads is a tragedy for the victims and their family and friends.

That’s why we must improve on the 2018 figures and do better.

The single best thing the Government can do to save lives on Victorian roads is to fix our most dangerous roads.

Fixing country roads will save lives.

Wire rope barriers are important, but not as important as safer and better maintained roads.

There’s no doubt that wire rope barriers can save lives but if they are wrongly positioned they can also put lives at risk.

There have been too many recent examples of dangerous placements of wire rope barriers that don’t pass the common sense test.

The placement of wire rope barriers on many country roads that are less than a metre from the road prevents vehicles from safely pulling over in the case of a breakdown or emergency.

These concerns are echoed by national trucking organisation, NatRoad, the Motorcycle Riders Association, the Victorian Motorcycle Council and the CFA, Ambulance Victoria and Municipal Councils. These organisations have warned the Andrews Labor Government about the hazards of installing these barriers at inappropriate locations.

Media reports during the recent flash flooding in Victoria’s north-east included safety concerns by motorists about the placement of wire rope barriers in situations of rising waters. The CFA has also expressed concern about difficulties around safely accessing grass fires due to the placement of some barriers.

Daniel Andrews has neglected the maintenance of our country roads for four years, and has been deaf to the concerns being raised by country Victorians.

His empty election promise to commit significant funding to road maintenance is the same one he made four years ago, with Victorians seeing only shoddy patch-ups and a continuing deterioration of roads right across the state in that time.

Fixing country roads will save country lives. Addressing the maintenance of these roads needs to be Daniel Andrews’ priority.

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