By Bonny Burrows
Hazardous trees will not be removed from a deadly Pakenham South intersection until investigations are complete, but a resident says it’s only a matter of time before another life is claimed.
Nar Nar Goon resident Ellie Mitterer has been calling on the council to remove a small portion of trees on Hall Road which “impend an already minimal line of sight” since a fatal accident on 24 October 2016.
It is unknown if the trees were a factor in the fatality, which claimed the life of a women aged in her forties, but Ms Mitterer said either way the trees were a hazard.
“Several times I have had near misses there, where cars have had to pull out from the stop sign into the intersection to see past the trees,” Ms Mitterer said.
The trees are on the left roadside of Hall Road when approaching the intersection from the east.
Their removal, Ms Mitterer said, would use minimal time and resources, but make a “huge impact” on driver visibility.
Cardinia Shire Council General Manager of Assets and Services Michael Ellis said the intersection was controlled by stop signs due to the trees that “limit sight lines”.
“The trees that restrict sight lines at the intersection are on both private property and the road reserve at this location,” Mr Ellis said.
“Until such time as the Victoria Police Major Crash Investigation Unit finalises its investigation at this site, any significant changes to the road configuration and surroundings will not be made by council.”
Ms Mitterer said she understood the investigation was continuing, but “what about the rest of us that use the road daily?”
“Surely they can trim back the trees in the meantime to improve vision.”
Mr Ellis would not commit to any alterations to the trees but said that the council had programmed works to duplicate the existing ‘Stop’ and ‘Stop Ahead’ signs along Five Mile Road to reinforce the need for drivers to stop at the intersection.