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Somersby tragedy — they found who to blame

It has been only a year since a part of the major road on Central Coast collapsed in a heavy rain, claiming five lives and only two months since only a miracle prevented even possible worse when part of Woy Woy road was washed away, and we finally know who is responsible for those deaths.

Of course, ladies and gentleman, not surprisingly it is the driver. He was pissed off (0.002 over the limit) and might have possibly smoked «some substance» some time before. Thanks God, we all know that driver simply was drunk and therefore did not notice the gap until very late.

What a bunch of crap, I think. Whole 0.002 over the limit! Did anyone notice any reference on how accurate that blood alcohol test is? But regardless, in the first turn they did not hit the power pole that crossed the road, they did not park in the tree — they drowned in a river of dirty water in the same spot where a road was supposed to be, and, which does not make it any easier for those who really responsible for road collapse, the drainage issue was known well before and the collapse was completely preventable. But nothing has been done. The driver might be drunk but isn’t his and four other people death a bit too severe punishment for not predicting what should and could be prevented?

Living in Australia, we are relatively lucky — we don’t get black ice on the road (awesome feeling of sudden and total loss of control, a fresh change of pants may be required, if you were lucky), we don’t have six months of snowfalls, limiting visibility to tens of meters, the roads are mostly built on rocks instead of swamps, there are still plenty of room for new road (opposed to crowded Europe). The only we need is to build a road and make sure that when rain finally falls, it will go into sewage alone, without taking the asphalt with it. It is as simple as it is and not a rocket science at all — I bet building the house on the slope may be much more challenging than constructing a road. But why the hell things like this still happen? What are they waiting for? For a school bus full of children, sorry, don’t even want to think about that.

They have got their whipping boy, but why should we even care about who to blame? There is nothing we can help them or their families, there is only one question that should be asked — what has been done to stop roads from being flushed away in a country suffering from worst ever drought? Woy Woy road makes me think that very little indeed…

I am very, very frustrated, ladies and gentlemen.

Новости маленького городка

Как я уже писал, у нас тут засуха. Как следствие этого, легкий дождик в прошлый четверг смыл нафиг дорогу местного значения.

Woy Woy road subsude at Bulls hill, april 2008

Казалось бы, ничего необычного, но это событие имело определенные последствия (в основном в виде увеличившегося вдвое времени в дороге) и даже позволило мне сделать небольшое исследование, результатами которого явились следующие выводы:

  1. Блоги иногда (?) могут соперничать с официальными СМИ по оперативности и качеству подачи информации
  2. Официальные власти в Австралии мышей не ловят. Впрочем, они везде мышей не ловят.
  3. Гугль, суко, умный.
  4. Дороги — далеко не только проблема одной шестой части сашими.
  5. Вместо решения проблемы «доступности жилья» Кевину стоило бы заняться проблемой общественного транспорта, которая действительно стоит. Или висит (так понятнее поклонникам Фрейда). Проблема доступного жилья после этого сама рассосется.

Traffic chaos on Central coast solved? May be.

Well, only 50 minutes from Gordon to Woy Woy today. As it was before.

They opened Woy Woy road in one direction and it apparently eased a pressure on evening commuters. But there are no evidences of any work in progress at Bulls hill, everything I could notice was a barricade and 25 km/h signs.

Another question is why did it open it in one direction only — while there is only one line available it still could be reversible, all they need is bring a pair of temporary radio controlled traffic lights and put them on the top and on the bottom of the hill — they do it all the time around roadwork sites anyway! In peak hour the whole thing could be one-directional, but there is no point of leaving it like this permanently — the traffic there has always been far from heavy and a couple of minutes wait in front of light would be much better than 25 minutes «drive» from Tascot to West Gosford.

Did they just never consider this option or there was another reason?

Woy Woy road closed

And will remain closed for a long time. See below.

It happened quitely and without broad media coverage. Of course, who cares about forgotten suburb one hour drive north from Sydney?

The thing is that our one hour drive turned into almost two as motorists forced to take a detour via Gosford. The distance seems almost the same on the map, but in fact traffic around West Gosfors is just hopeless — in evening rush hour a traffic jam starts at Kariong! And still no «breaking news» and even any pictures. Isn’t it because what happened is very similar to Pacific hwy collapse at Somersby last year?

Thanks to Internet, there are some info and pictures available

Woy Woy road subsude at Bulls hill, april 2008

But still no oficial information about when the road can be opened again…

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