Roads and Maritime Services to investigate safety improvements for highway at Faulconbridge

Safety campaign: Members of the Blue Mountains Cycling Safety Forum near the dangerous section near Faulconbridge in November 2017.
Safety campaign: Members of the Blue Mountains Cycling Safety Forum near the dangerous section near Faulconbridge in November 2017.

Cycling groups have welcomed a decision by the Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) to “investigate options” to improve safety on the Great Western Highway at Faulconbridge.

The RMS will look at the section of highway between Todarellos Fruit House and the Metro Petroleum following lobbying by Penrith MP Stuart Ayres.

The Penrith Cycling Club (PCC) and the Blue Mountains Cycling Safety Forum have been advocating for changes to this section of road since last year.

Forum spokesman David Tritton welcomed the intervention of Mr Ayres, describing the announcement as “a very positive development”.

“This is not just a local issue, the Great Western Highway is a regional road with around 28,000 vehicle movements each day between Todarellos Fruit House and the Metro Petroleum – 12 per cent of which are heavy vehicles,” he said.

“The unsafe road conditions have contributed to crashes resulting in serious injuries to the victims. The highway impacts not just Blue Mountains residents but communities in the Central West and Greater Western Sydney who frequently use it as vital link.”

Mr Ayres told the Gazette he welcomed the RMS’ “willingness to look at better options for cyclists in this busy area”.

“We want to make sure we get this right; it’s an important roads corridor for trucks and cars as well as cyclists,” he said.

Blue Mountains MP Trish Doyle and Labor roads spokeswoman, Jodi McKay, recently visited the area for the second time to show support for the safety campaign by cyclists and other road users.

“Mr Ayres’ intervention means that there is now bipartisan political support for making the highway safer for all road users at Faulconbridge,” said Mr Tritton.

“We are pleased that this is a bipartisan concern. The community expects its elected local representatives to be road safety advocates and be responsive to reasonable concerns about serious road hazards in the local area and mobilise resources to safely manage those hazards. This means politicians doing the right thing by using their influence to effect good road safety outcomes for community.”

Mr Tritton said “motorists, cyclists and other vulnerable road users will thank Stuart Ayres for his commitment in driving a solution to the safety problems on the GWH at Faulconbridge and also to the Member for Blue Mountains for her ongoing support and her efforts in bringing this issue to the attention of the NSW Government.

“The Penrith Cycling Club and Blue Mountains Cycling Safety Forum will work with Mr Ayres, RMS and the Member for Blue Mountains to find solutions to the hazardous road conditions at Faulconbridge to protect the most vulnerable road users.”