Flashing lights at 40km school zones across the Hunter will fail unless the NSW Government urgently commits $13 million a year in maintenance funding, damning documents obtained by the NSW Labor Opposition have revealed.
A third of all school flashing lights around NSW schools will reach the end of their life before 2023 and 44% of 40 km school zone markings on roads across the state already require maintenance.
The data comes as schools across NSW mark National Walk Safely to School Day on Friday 11 September 2020, encouraging students and families to walk or ride to school.
In many regions, including the Hunter region, more 40km school zones require maintenance than not, with 51% of road markings reaching their end of life by 2023.
In the Hunter, flashing lights at 198 schools will come to the end of life in the next three years, including at:
- Singleton Public School
- Cessnock West Public School
- Charlestown East Public School
- Shortland Public School
- Tomaree Public School
- Lochinvar Public School
- North Lakes High School
- Bonnells Bay Public School
It is unbelievable that the NSW Government wouldn’t consider the safety of kids around our schools to be an urgent priority,” said Mr Barr.
“The consistent message from families is that they want to options to travel to school, but they just won’t leave their cars behind if it’s unsafe for their kids to walk or ride.
“The Premier owes it to families and kids across the Hunter to stump up the money and keep our 40km school zones safe.”
Crash studies show that the most dangerous time to be on our roads in the afternoon is at school pick up and road trauma remains the number one killer of kids under the age of 14.
Jo Haylen, Shadow Minister for Active Transport, said “The Premier is telling families to walk or ride to school, but her Government is not stumping up the cash to keep the lights flashing in 40km school zones or to repaint the road markings to keep our kids safe.
“The Government must commit to improving safety and creating local jobs by properly maintaining this vital infrastructure.”
Transport officials warned the Berejiklian Government in secret internal advice immediately after the 2019 election, of a nearly $11.5 billion roads funding black hole including key election commitments that will not be delivered and a road maintenance backlog.