Call for 50km/h speed limit on Fernbank Creek Road

Narrow road: Bianca and Sarah King walk along Fernbank Creek Road.

Narrow road: Bianca and Sarah King walk along Fernbank Creek Road.

A Fernbank Creek Road representative has called for an immediate speed limit reduction and the road to be closed at one end.

Fernbank Creek Road links Hastings River Drive and the Pacific Highway.

Dr Debra King said the sealing of the unsealed portion of the road led to a large increase in through traffic.

“Fernbank Creek Road is an extremely narrow road, has multiple blind corners and crests, significant roadside hazards with water on both sides of the road in parts,” she said.

“Prior to the road being sealed it was usually only used by local residents.”

Dr King said believes the Cassegrain Winery end of the road should be blocked to stop speeding through traffic and the speed limit immediately reduced to 50km/h.

She said the road meets the criteria of an "at risk location" and a 50km/h speed limit should have been set.

“There will be more accidents on the road,” Dr King said.

“There is no doubt about it.”

Dr King has raised her concerns with Port Macquarie-Hastings Council and Roads and Maritime Services (RMS).

She said the council and RMS had made no meaningful safety improvement to the road.

A RMS spokesperson said RMS carried out a speed zone review of Fernbank Creek Road after concerns raised by the council and residents.

“The review recommended the speed limit be reduced from 100km/h to 80km/h to improve safety for the community and better suit the proximity of the road to residential properties,” the spokesperson said.

The speed zone change came into effect in June 2017.

“Other safety measures implemented at the time included the installation of a range of signs to warn of upcoming curves in the road, wandering livestock and potential of flooding,” the spokesperson said.

Roads and Maritime will continue to work with the council on proposals to improve safety on Fernbank Creek Road.

Council acting director Andrew Doig said in August 2016, the council requested the RMS to conduct a speed review of Fernbank Creek Road.

This review was finalised in April 2017.

Dr Doig said RMS determined the current 80km/h speed limit was appropriate for the road.

The council erected four 80 km/h speed signs and added more than 30 additional signs including new speed limit ahead, speed supplementary warning, turn and curve warning, flood warning and depth indicator, horse and rider, and alignment markers.

“Council will continue to work with the RMS to ensure the safety measures on Fernbank Creek Rd are appropriate for the road width, geometry and traffic volumes,” Mr Doig said.


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