Road causing a rumble

Traffic. Ripple strips installed on the new Tarkine Drive are causing rumbles among some members of the public with calls for action to have them removed.

Ripple, or rumble strips as they are sometimes called, create noise to alert drivers to the likelihood of animals nearby, and animals to the presence of vehicles.

Circular Head Councillor Ashley Popowski said he has had numerous complaints from locals about the strips on the new tourist route as well as the Temma main road.

“I have been shown photos of tyre damage and local users are concerned with future suspension damage due to the ripple strips installed across the road,” Cr Popowski said.

He said that on the 80-kilometre stretch of road from Marrawah to Trowutta Road at Roger River, there are 154 groups of five strips – 770 strips in total.

He added that there are also 74 ‘Endangered’ signs to alert drivers of the possibility of threatened wildlife nearby.

“The strips need modifying to eliminate any damage to vehicles and negative comments from users. And the road at the Roger River bush is in disrepair and needs immediate attention before the upcoming summer period,” Cr Popowski said.

However the Department of State Growth has seen no evidence to support claims that the strips had caused any vehicle damage.

“The Department of State Growth was required as a condition of project environmental approval to install rumble strips on Tarkine Drive and the approaches to Tarkine Drive,” a department spokesperson said.

Trialled in 2012, the strips were found to reduce roadkill by more than 50 per cent.

Thermoplastic rumble strips were initially installed in 2013. A more expensive and durable rubber product was used in the final installation this year.

“Data collected through animal abundance and roadkill surveys was used to locate the latter in areas on Roger River Road, Sumac Road and Arthur River Road, where the most roadkill in the region occurred,” the spokesperson said.

“The strips were typically installed in sets of five and around six such sets installed at each roadkill ‘hotspot’. Gaps were provided to allow road drainage and installation on curves was avoided for safety reasons. Reflective tape was also installed.”

The $23 million Tarkine Drive was officially opened in June.

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