Upgraded road ‘dangerous’

Apollo Bay’s Ken Forrester has welcomed a Colac Otway Shire Council manager’s offer to meet onsite with residents and Busty Road users to discuss their concerns with the width and elevation of the road’s new bitumen seal.

Apollo Bay’s Ken Forrester has welcomed a Colac Otway Shire Council manager’s offer to meet onsite with residents and Busty Road users to discuss their concerns with the width and elevation of the road’s new bitumen seal.

Apollo Bay district residents hope Colac Otway Shire Council will act on concerns about a road they say is “far more dangerous” than it was before its upgrade.

The council has agreed to meet with residents and road users onsite at Busty Road, east of Apollo Bay, and review the condition of the resealed road to discuss their safety concerns.

Busty Road joins Wild Dog Creek Road and Biddles Road and is a route shared by residents, visitors and tourists.

Regular Busty Road travellers told last month’s council meeting of their fears with the upgraded road, which they believe is “significantly narrower” than it was before the upgrade with sloping sides that create a danger, particularly when vehicles pass.

Bill Gross said the road seemed narrower and asked that if a suveyor’s report verified it was much narrower, would there be remediation.

Council officer Paula Gardiner said she was unable confirm the “exact width of the road” but it was “quite similar to what it was” and she would “come back to you with further data”, without any commitment.

Phil Lawson, another regular Busty Road user, said the road’s “shoulders seem to be a lot steeper” and asked about the elevation from the centre.

“Could it be that the road curves away; it feels quite dangerous at night, it seems far more dangerous than it used to be,” Mr Lawson told the council.

Ms Gardiner said the finished height of the road was 200 millimetres higher; “yes, the centre alignment is higher than it used to be”.

Infrastructure general manager Ingrid Bishop stepped in on the discussion and asked to meet the community onsite at Busty Road.

“There seems to be real problems,” Ms Bishop said.

“Council looks forward to meeting onsite with residents of Busty Road.

“Due to some key residents currently being away on holidays, council is yet to set a date.

“A date will be set upon their return, when we’ll look at the road conditions and the survey together.”

Biddles Road resident Ken Forrester was not at the council meeting but said he was pleased the council would meet with residents to discuss their safety concerns.

“It is far too narrow in some spots and we have a lot of tourists come inland from the Great Ocean Road now, and you have to be really careful on that road.

“We have tourists stop in the middle of the road, sometimes they’re lost, but only about 25 per cent of the properties have permanent residents so there are a lot of visitors using the road.”

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