The ALstonville bypass intersection at ALstonville has been the scene of numerous incidents. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star
The ALstonville bypass intersection at ALstonville has been the scene of numerous incidents. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star Marc Stapelberg

'Something needs to be done': bypass safety debated

WHEN residents on the Alstonville plateau hear sirens, they brace themselves and hope it's not another prang, and not their loved ones.

Last week's tragedy near Ballina Rd has again sparked a divided debate about safety on Bruxner Highway between Alstonville and Wollongbar.

The Alstonville Bypass opened on May 27, 2011 and while it's freed up travel time for many, safety concerns arose as soon as it was finished.

As community leaders meet to discuss the issue this morning, and Roads Minister Melinda Pavey agrees to visit the site, readers have responded to a discussion about what should be done to prevent more deaths on the bypass.

Alex Morschel said a roundabout, traffic lights or speed reduction would not be the answer.

"It's a main highway so no,” he said.

"It's a crest combined with a blind spot coupled with people who seem to have zero idea how to use a merging lane.”

Kris Larnach said the bypass should always have been "a dual carriageway with proper over and underpasses”.

Matthew Witchard warned the RMS was unlikely to build a roundabout on the highway.

"Just don't be in a hurry and drive to the conditions,” he said.

Jenny Falls said often, the motorists were to blame for incidents on the bypass.

"Too many ignorant drivers that won't let people merge,” she said.

"Too many people not taking care and sticking to the speed limit.

"But a roundabout would certainly help (and) should have been built l But I believe that was a shire/local decision as they didn't want to spoil the entrance to Alstonville.”

Scott Poolman, however, said such a modern stretch of road shouldn't have so many issues.

"Considering this is a relatively new road ... too many people have died here in such a short time,” Mr Poolman said.

"Something needs to be done.”

Sharna Vidler said the sun glare at certain times of the day was the main issue.

Last Monday, emergency services were called to the Ballina Rd junction about 4.30pm.

A van leaving Ballina Rd had collided with a motorbike travelling east on the Bruxner Highway.

The motorcyclist, a 39-year-old man, died at the scene.



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