Highway safety in spotlight

Salty Shoes creator Tom Dempers and Samuel Hermans. Picture: Marcus Whisson d400652
Salty Shoes creator Tom Dempers and Samuel Hermans. Picture: Marcus Whisson d400652

A man was killed on April 26 when his vehicle hit a tree beside the highway near the Lage Road intersection just before dawn.

A week later, a driver was airlifted to hospital after a two-car collision at the intersection of the highway and Rutland Road.

Main Roads spokesman Dean Roberts said vehicle accidents along the highway from its intersection with Warbrook Road to Rutland Road had increased markedly over the past four years.

‘From January 1, 2008, to December 31, 2012 (the latest figures available) there were 89 crashes on this section of the highway,’ Mr Roberts said.

‘Ten of these accidents caused serious injuries.’

Bullsbrook resident Michelle Mackenzie said visibility at both the Warbrook and Rutland Road highway intersections were of major concern.

‘I have had people pull out in front of me and had to slam on the brakes,’ she said.

‘Drivers get impatient. I have seen so many cars pull out in front of road trains and trucks, too.

‘Something needs to be done.’

Swan Hills MLA Frank Alban said that once constructed, the Perth-Darwin Highway would take a significant amount of heavy traffic off local roads.

‘Not only will it provide a safer, purpose-built freight route but the transfer of traffic to the new route will significantly enhance safety on the existing highway,’ he said.

City of Swan north ward councillor Kevin Bailey said one of the biggest problems was that drivers ‘do not take enough care on the roads’.

‘I have seen it on numerous occasions. It is only in a 90km/h zone, but maybe an extension of the 60km/h zone at certain times of the day may help,’ he said.