Ian Braybrook, Castlemaine
The community group ‘Newstead 2021’ has petitioned the government to halt the safety works on the Pyrenees Highway between Castlemaine and Newstead, principally because it involves the removal of 146 trees (‘Road works halt’, Midland Express, February 5). As a result the work has been postponed.
Newstead does not own that road; it is used by thousands of other people each year. The proposed work is a matter of safety for all road users, not just the residents of Newstead.
More road signs and better edges, as suggested by the group (already included in the halted work) will contribute to safety, but nothing compares to the danger of roadside trees (replaceable).
I am sure that the families of people who have died (irreplaceable) as a result of collision with trees on this, and other roads, would support the removal of those that are hazardous.
If the 532 Newstead people (population 756) who signed the petition contributed just one dollar they would easily pay for tree replacements. Further, they could combine to dig the necessary holes at no cost to the public.
On behalf of all road users I urge VicRoads and the government to put our safety first and get the job done.