STOP THE CARNAGE
By EMMA CORNFORD
EARLY last Saturday morning, Grafton teacher Dave Youman was woken by the sound of a car losing control outside his house on the corner of Queen and Arthur streets.
He is often woken by that sound ? but this time the car hit a tree and a young man died.
Mr Youman was first on the scene and the ghastly image is still fresh in his mind.
"For the past two years I've been to the council and the police trying to get something done about the roundabout there ... and this is the straw that broke the camel's back," he said yesterday.
"It's just sad that two young lives have been ruined because of this."
Mr Youman admits he is no engineer, but said there were a number of things that could be done about the problem of cars and trucks speeding through the roundabout.
"During the weekend this is like a speedway. My wife gets woken easily and there are at least six cars every weekend that do that, but manage to control it; who survive," he said.
"This is my challenge for 2006, to get this fixed, and I'll be pushing for it."
In a letter published on page 6 today, Mr Youman suggests adding signage, increasing the height of the roundabout and creating gutters on Arthur Street rather than simply gravel shoulders.
"Council has the power and the responsibility to fix this.
"It's only a matter of time before more fatalities."
Mr Youman has already had a car go through his fence and has witnessed and heard numerous near-misses.
Aside from the damage, he is also concerned about the safety of his children, aged six and four.
"They're getting to an age where soon they should be able to cross a street unsupervised, but that's just not going to happen around here," he said.
"My wife has even suggested moving because of the dangers around here. I just hope something gets done about it."