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Tree threat hangs over drivers

Friday, February 9, 2024

 

The perilous state of the roads in the Ovens Valley were firmly in the spotlight as Parliament returned for the first time in 2024, with Nationals Member for Ovens Valley, Tim McCurdy, sharing the community’s concerns.


Mr McCurdy said that it was crucial to start the year off strong with important local issues.


“This is an important local issue; I have been to public meetings with 40 or 50 people turning up each time to raise their concerns about the dangers of overhanging tree limbs.


“I drive around the electorate and see many massive limbs which have been dragged off the road, which if they fell at the wrong time, could seriously injure, or kill a family.


“The council wants to help make the roads safer, but their hands are tied by DEECA.


“Sometimes DEECA will not let you remove these limbs even though it is a council road and sometimes DEECA will say you can remove the tree, but it is going to cost you $20,000.”


Mr McCurdy said that too much red-tape and environmental protectionism is putting drivers at risk.


“Surely Victoria must be the only state in the world that refuses to remove trees and canopies that are safety hazards, and then they wonder why the road toll is where it sits.


“Victoria really has to change its attitude on trees and roadsides.


“Safety must come first – human lives versus trees.


“The government needs to change their policy on the duty of care for people’s lives rather than the trees.”

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