Ballina blackspot is the regions most dangerous
By PATRIZIA REIMER email@example.com SANDRA LOWER is used to hearing the screeches and horns, so she rarely raises her head these days.
After four years working on the corner declared by the NRMA as the worst blackspot for crashes in the Richmond-Tweed area it has become an all too familiar sound.
"There are always trucks which have to stop while turning on the roundabout as cars try to go on the inside," the BCU branch manager said.
"You hear brakes screeching all the time but you don't really take much notice."
The annual NRMA list of worst crash sites found the intersection of Kerr Street and the Pacific Highway/River Street at Ballina had the most crashes (17) in the year ending June, 2007.
The survey was based on NRMA insurance claims and head researcher Robert McDonald said most of the crashes were due to driver error.
"Motorists need to exercise caution when using these sites, as driver inattention, poor merging skills, and tail-gating were likely causes of many of these crashes," he said.
John Truman, Ballina Council's Civil Services group manager agrees driver education is important.
Mr Truman said the recently adopted Road Safety Strategic Plan would help target key road user groups so the council could plan accordingly.
"The plan therefore provides the direction for the education and other initiatives of council aimed to continuously develop driver behaviour," he said.
Ballina Chamber of Commerce and Industry secretary Bryan Marriot was not surprised to see the intersection top the list.
"If there were going to be crashes, this would be the intersection most likely," he said.
"For Ballina people, especially those using Kerr Street and living in the Kerr Street area, the Ballina bypass can't come soon enough."