West coast warning

Parks and Wildlife Service has recently undertaken works at the Sandy Cape Track, from Temma to the Thornton River. Here track height is built up in order to lower water levels. (Below) Big Eel track hardening provides added stability for vehicles.

Leisure. As the Recreation Day long weekend approaches (Monday November 2), many holidaymakers will head for the west coast and are reminded to take care and beware of changing road conditions.

The Arthur River Parks and Wildlife Service together with the Circular Head Community and Road Safety Partnership (CRSP) has issued a track update and safety message.

Acting ranger in charge at Arthur River and CRSP member, Gary Cole advised that draining and track hardening works have been undertaken at the Sandy Cape Track, from Temma to Thornton River.

“These works bring the track standard up to our management vehicle requirements and improve access for standard 4WDs,” he said.

Mr Cole also recommended driving in convoy when accessing Sandy Cape Beach or the Balfour Track.

“We recommend recreational drivers stay below 40km/h on the tracks,” he said.

“People can call into our Parks office at Arthur River to get a report on the current driving conditions.”

Earlier this month, during the Burnie Show long weekend, Parks found there to be “good numbers of visitors”, both Tasmanian and from interstate.

Mr Cole said he was disappointed to witness ATV drivers without helmets; an obvious safety concern and cause for a $158 infringement.

Seventy per cent of drivers had Recreational Driver Passes, which means Motor Accidents Insurance Board (MAIB) cover in case of accident, however the others did not.

If you wish to purchase a Recreational Driver Passes and the Parks office at Arthur River is closed, visit a Service Tasmania outlet, or go online at shop.parks.tas.gov.au.

 

WORKS

The following works have been undertaken at the Sandy Cape Track, from Temma to the Thornton River:

• Opened drainage points to lower water levels in waterholes. Desirable outcome is maximum water depths of 700mm as required by Parks management vehicles’ access standards, and in condition good enough for off-road camper trailers to be towed along track to Sandy Cape beach.

• All main track (not braids) water holes have solid bases, so no need to braid around them;

• Rehabilitation of braids: have dragged the sides of disused tracks into the centre of old disused tracks, providing organic matter to stimulate vegetation growth on silica sand which has no organic matter; and

• Some track hardening has occurred to ensure existing tracks do not increase in depth below natural ground level due to vehicle impacts; and to lift water level to less than 700mm in depth.

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