Resident voices safety fears for dump site

The preferred site (3) opposite 1190 Goodwood Road. Photo: Waitaki District Council
The preferred site (3) opposite 1190 Goodwood Road. Photo: Waitaki District Council

A Palmerston resident says the proposed site of a motor caravan dump station at Palmerston is not safe for motorists and is questioning why it is located in a 100kmh speed limit area.

On Tuesday, the Otago Daily Times reported the proposed dumping site in Goodwood Rd would allow the emptying of motor caravan septic tanks on a council-owned road verge.

However, a concerned resident who lived a short distance from the proposed site said it was far from ideal, given its limited turning space, narrow sections, nearby rail crossings and a one-lane bridge near the site.

The man, who did not want to be named, feared drivers not used to the area might cause crashes as a result.

''The main thing is it's situated in a 100kmh area. They're planning on having vehicles doing U-turns in the area.

''A lot of motor caravans will be driven by overseas drivers that aren't used to our conditions and our roads.

''If they're coming up Goodwood Rd and pull in and do a U-turn, they're relying on their left-hand mirror.

''If a vehicle hits another vehicle side-on, even at 70kmh, there's still going to be injuries.''

Gary Kircher.
Mayor Gary Kircher

He also accused the council and Waihemo Community Board of not clearly conveying its intentions to nearby residents before last week's community board meeting, and was also concerned about rubbish attracting vermin and pests, which he said would impact on the area's native birdlife.

The man was not the only Palmerston resident against the site. On Monday, 27 people gathered at the site to protest the plan.

Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher said the site was selected based on criteria that included the potential on neighbouring properties, safety, road conditions and proximity to water and sewerage infrastructure.

He said while the site was located a short distance within the posted 100kmh speed limit, Goodwood Rd was ''not a road where you'd want to be travelling 100kmh'', as it was frequently used by heavy trucks and was not straight.

Mr Kircher admitted the consultation process had not been ideal, which caused ''some disruption'' and that council officers had been instructed to ensure ''proper consultation'' was carried out.

Other sites - the railway yards, former railway land in Stour St, Copinsha St near the war memorial, the corner of Runbrake and Brough Sts and the Palmerston domain and showgrounds site - would be considered before a final decision was made.

daniel.birchfield@odt.co.nz

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