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March 20, 2006

Flood sign inaccuracies

An email was sent today to Byron Shire Council, pointing out that the flood signs on Grays Lane are out by as much as 20cm or more, and suggesting they might like to get fixed before someone who loses a car sues them. The full letter (including measurements during the most recent flood) is attached.
General Manager – for forwarding to relevant department? Byron Shire Council. Dear General Manager Ever since the flood signs were installed on Grays Lane, the local residents have realized that they were inaccurate, it has been common wisdom that it is at least 20cm deeper than the signs say. Since this is well known, it is rare, though not unknown for local residents to get into trouble, however each year one or two cars are lost when visitors - guided by the erroneous signs - think they can drive through safely In January someone wading through got into difficulties due to the depth being significantly deeper than they thought. Apart from caring about the poor unfortunates who have lost their vehicles, we feel it is only a matter of time before council gets sued - if not by a driver, then by an insurance company - for creating misleading confidence. At the recent flood some informal measurements were taken, at all three crossings, in all cases the depth was measured in the middle of the road at the deepest point, i.e. the maximum depth that someone walking would encounter if they stuck to the middle (top of the camber). Obviously a car - with one wheel either side of the camber - would find it deeper, as of course would someone following the edge rather than the middle of the road. The readings - travelling from the highway towards the beach were ... First crossing - over the creek nearest the highway. First sign (facing eastbound traffic) says 0.05 m Second sign (facing eastbound traffic) says 0.22 m Third sign (facing westbound traffic) says 0.35 m Depth was 0.43 m, so 21cm deeper than the second sign, (the first sign is just a joke we presume?) Second crossing, the fields draining across the road towards the east of the gravel section. first sign (facing eastbound traffic) said 0.40 m second sign (facing westbound traffic) said 0.45 m and it was around 0.42 m deep. So the signs are closer to reality, but read differently in the two directions. The third crossing said 0 on the sign facing westbound traffic, but it was around 15cm deep, by the same method. We would respectfully suggest that the signs be adjusted to err on the safe side rather than erring significantly the other way.

Posted at March 20, 2006 4:37 PM

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