Rural road signs

As fast as Ashburton District Council is repairing and replacing vandalised rural road signs they are being knocked down again.

Last night one of the 12 road signs recently knocked over by vandals at the Thompsons Track/Pole Road intersection was having to be replaced again this morning (November 25).

A give way sign was found lying on the ground having been knocked over, presumably by a vehicle.

It is hard to know for sure if this incident was intentional damage or a mishap given there is a lot of work happening in the area involving large transport vehicles and machinery.

"It may have been knocked over accidently by a large vehicle being manoeuvred around the corner at the intersection. You just don't know, but we would like to think that when something like this happens it's reported to Council so we can act immediately and replace the sign," says Group Manager Service Delivery Neil McCann.

The cost of installing a new give way sign is about $300 and will be an additional expense to an already mounting road sign repair bill.

If anyone in the community sees suspicious activity near or around the district's road signs can they please report this to the Ashburton Police as this has the potential to cost more than just the financial cost.

Last week Council's Chief Executive Andrew Dalziel expressed his concern that people's lives were being put at risk after 12 signs along Thompsons Track and at the intersection of Pole Road were knocked over and unable to been seen by motorists.

"The signs play a very important part in helping keep people safe on the roads and people can crash as a result of this kind of mindless stupidity," says Mr Dalziel.  

The 12 signs destroyed last week along Thompsons Track included stop and give ways signs, directional signs and chevrons.

Council is urging people to contact them immediately if they see a road sign that has been damaged in any way or knocked over.

"It's important we are able to address it quickly, particularly the regulatory signs and particularly at this time of the year then there are more people travelling on the district's roads," Mr McCann says.

It is estimated that there are about 1000 vehicle movements on Thompsons Track on a daily basis.

"Motorists, especially those unfamiliar with the area, need to be able to rely on signs to provide them with information they need to know to keep themselves and other road users safe."

In the last 10 years, 43% of road crashes in the Ashburton District have happened at intersections.

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Page reviewed: 11 Dec 2014 2:36pm