Rain causes footpath to fall away
A RATEPAYER’S suggestion that Tiaro is a poor relation to Hervey Bay was yesterday dismissed by Fraser Coast councillor and former Tiaro mayor Linda Harris.
Resident Peter Lockwood described as “an insult to the people of Tiaro” an improvised footpath that has fallen away with December’s rains.
The path, built in early November, runs from the top of Bridge Street near the police station to the QCWA hall and units for the disabled and elderly.
Mr Lockwood says he warned Fraser Coast council officials that the crusher dust used to build the 100m pathway alongside the Bruce Highway would not hold.
“But they knew better,” he said.
“Thousands were spent putting in this unsealed footpath for the disabled and school children to access schools and shops and the doctor.
“My neighbours have asked: ‘Would such a footpath be done in Hervey Bay?’”
Ms Harris would not entertain the suggestion in Mr Lockwood’s question, saying the budget allocation for footpaths throughout the Fraser Coast was limited.
She said Mayor Mick Kruger and David Dalgleish, chair of the council’s rural and urban infrastructure committee, had acted positively after the mayor had inspected the area.
“The council did the best they could to make the access better considering there was no council budget allocation,” Ms Harris said. “We can’t just pull money out of a hat.
“There is only a very small footpath budget for the whole of the Fraser Coast.
“It worked extremely well until we’ve got this rain.”
She said footpaths were included in the capital works plan but an upgrade in Tiaro was not included in the council’s current 10-year plan.
Mr Lockwood fears a fall or injury is a real possibility after rain dislodged the path and has sent photographs of the path in its current state to Ms Harris and Mr Kruger.
“Young children, as well as elderly and disabled people including my wife in her wheeled walker, have to play Russian roulette with downward traffic in the rain.”