Parents want safer crossing for Buninyong pupils

PARENTS from Buninyong Primary School are calling for an upgrade to the school crossing and reduced speed limits on the Midland Highway, believing that it is unsafe.

Currently, the busy road is marked with a school crossing sign and does not have a reduced 40 km/h speed limit in school hours. 

Cars and trucks are limited to driving through Buninyong at 60 km/h, however some believe it is difficult for those coming down hill from

Elaine to slow down quickly enough.

Parent Jane Walsh said people only really slowed down when they got to the roundabout in the centre of town. 

“It’s a high-traffic area. There’s lot of trucks as well, because it’s the run to Geelong (from Ballarat),” she said.

“There’s a lot of foot traffic as well. Most kids walk to shcool because everyone is local.” 

Buninyong Primary School principal Bernie Conlan said many families chose not to walk across the school crossing because it was so busy.

“What tends to happen is a lot of kids go down and cross at the roundabout, which is not ideal,” he said. 

He said the reduced speed limit often caught drivers unaware and that flashing signs and a reduced speed limit would be much more effective in getting the message across. 

“It really hits you in the face from a long way away,” he said

Ballarat East MP Geoff Howard said the busy state of the road showed that installation of new sign technology was overdue in Buninyong. 

“This is really a candidate for having the flashing signs if any school ever was,” he said. 

VicRoads regional director Ewen Nevett said state government guidelines meant road safety resources were being directed to the highest risk sites.

He said VicRoads would assess and prioritise the eligibility of a 40km/h electronic time-based speed limit at the Midland Highway school crossing:

“Taking into consideration risk factors such as traffic volume and speed and the number of school children using the crossing,” he said.

tom.cowie@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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