CORANGAMITE Shire Council passed a motion to write to VicRoads about concerns with the safety of school crossings near Terang College’s primary campus during its Ordinary Meeting of Council last Tuesday.
Central Ward councillor Chris O’Connor said the main issue was the sun glare, which essentially blinds drivers during the early morning.
“It’s just unbelievable, its strength in your face,” Cr O’Connor said.
“It’s been a problem for a long time.
“Nothing has ever been done about it.”
He said the school had reported numerous close calls over the years because people were unable to see the speed restriction signs.
“Hopefully, we can get a resolution to the problem,” Cr O’Connor said.
VicRoads acting regional director Nigel Powers said the authority was working closely with Corangamite Shire Council on the matter.
He said VicRoads staff discussed the issue with council officers during a meeting held on site at the crossing last week.
“VicRoads indicated that consideration would be given to other possible improvements, including electronic speed signs, and we would investigate possible sources of funding,” Mr Powers said.
He said VicRoads recognised the distress caused over the crossing’s safety throughout Terang College and the township as a whole.
“VicRoads understands the Terang community’s concerns regarding road safety at the school crossing near Terang College,” Mr Powers said.
“Road safety in and around school zones across Victoria is a priority for VicRoads.”
He said electronic signs would replace the current signage, if they were approved.
Mr Powers said drivers should follow speed restriction signs to ensure all road users were safe.
Terang College assistant principal Kerrin McKenzie said he and his colleagues had been fighting for the installation of the electronic signage for eight years.
He called on VicRoads to take action before an accident occurred.
“Let’s be a little bit proactive,” Mr McKenzie said.
Mr McKenzie said it was not only the glare from the morning sun that was a problem, but that people often drove over the 40 kilometres per hour limit regardless.
Mr McKenzie said it would only take one inattentive driver to cause a disaster.
“The long and short of it is we’re not going to let go of it,” he said.
“The safety of the students’ lives is the number one priority.”