Signs to avert danger

From left, Cockatoo Captain Chris White, Monbulk Member James Merlino and CRAG21 spokesperson Gerald Shaddock next to the newly erected signs.

By Derek Schlennstedt

Signs have been erected outside Cockatoo CFA to warn drivers when turning out, after the Cockatoo Road Action Group (CRAG21) and the local CFA advocated for them.
In August this year, Cockatoo Captain Chris White told the Mail about the numerous near-misses he and other Cockatoo CFA volunteers have had as they tried to attend incidents.
Those near misses, he said, were the result of a blind corner from which motorists must turn out, with a small mirror on the opposite side of the road to help gauge vehicles coming around the bend.
Following representations made to Monbulk Member James Merlino, signs have been erected, warning drivers to slow down.
“Even with the mirror there, it is really hard to see what’s coming around the bend,” Mr White said.
“Ideally, I’d still like the flashing lights,” he said.
Mr White said there had been a number of near misses because the fire trucks were slow to cross the pavement and some motorists were not aware of the station.
The signs, which have been erected, read: ‘Fire station, prepare to slow down”, but they are yet to have flashing lights attached.
Though, Mr White said he was pleased that the signs had been constructed in such a short space of time, and added that it would be better if they had flashing lights to improve visibility of the signs and warn drivers when the fire trucks were crossing.
“I don’t want to be the one driving out of here, and have a crash happen … we’re trying to help people,” Mr White said.
These signs have made it so much safer for the members who are taking the trucks out to an emergency, but also it’s safer for the community as it decreases the chance of a crash when we’re leaving … eventually when we get lights, it’ll make it 100 per cent even better.”
Mr Merlino attended Cockatoo CFA, and said he was happy to lobby for VicRoads to install lights on the signs which would warn motorists when fire trucks were leaving the station.

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