Traralgon community members and The Nationals Member for Eastern Victoria Region, Melina Bath are calling for upgrades to the Dranes Road school bus stop to be fast tracked in time for the 2021 school year.
Ms Bath said a new bus stop was required to improve safety for students living in Dranes Road and Traralgon’s new housing estate, ‘The Rise’.
“Rapid housing development around Traralgon Maffra Road and Dranes Road has created a number of safety issues, which were raised with me by parents of children catching the school bus at this stop,” said Ms Bath.
Following upgrades to the Gippsland Plains Rail Trail and an assessment by VicRoads, the drain pipe bus shelter used by students was deemed unsuitable as the bus could no longer pull off the road at this location.
VicRoads designated a new location for the bus stop 300 metres from the original to allow more space for the bus to pull off road to collect students. However, the children have not been provided shelter and parents are not happy with the location.
Ms Bath said the new location where children boarded and disembarked is located near a crest in the road, limiting vision for drivers of vehicles to see the school children at the stop.
“Additionally, the children no longer have any form of shelter, which is far from ideal in the heat or wet,” said Ms Bath.
“To enable the bus to pull safely off the road the children must step back into an area which is either a muddy drain or overgrown grass depending on the season.”
Ms Bath said in looking for a solution to the issue Latrobe Valley Bus Lines has identified a suitable shelter for the new stop which meets safety specifications and a funding application has been submitted to Latrobe City Council for its installation.
“Latrobe Valley Bus Lines has been proactively working with the Department of Transport to upgrade the stop, while I have written to Latrobe City Council (LCC) asking for the upgrade to be made a priority,” said Ms Bath.
“Our local families and the students are looking forward to seeing a positive outcome from the LCC in time for the 2021 school year.”
Ms Bath said she will continue to seek a constructive solution with all parties to solve the issue so students are provided with a safe and protected area to catch the bus to school.