International tourists in Grafton for the Jacaranda Festival are doing whatever it takes to capture the perfect jacaranda photos including playing 'chicken' with traffic on some of the city's busiest roads.
International tourists in Grafton for the Jacaranda Festival are doing whatever it takes to capture the perfect jacaranda photos including playing 'chicken' with traffic on some of the city's busiest roads. Bill North

YOUR SAY: Readers divided over tourist mayhem

OUR Facebook community had a mixed response to an opinion piece on Grafton's kings of the road, with some calling for local residents to put aside their anger at tourists taking photos at inopportune locations and enjoy the town's Jacaranda festivities. 

Others felt closing Jacaranda hotspots could be closed off at certain times of day, allowing tourists to nab that perfect Jacaranda photo. 

Cheryl Barnes: Just drive safely let the tourists enjoy our beautiful Jacaranda trees only here for a short time. They also bring $$ to our town.

Justine McNamara: Wow, the comments are much better than what I've seen in previous years! Great to see. Hope everyone can enjoy this lovely time of year.

Christopher Blanchard: Unfortunately some of the tourists are putting themselves in very precarious positions. Yesterday I encountered 6 ladies standing in the turn left lane at the Villiers/Dobie street roundabout, completely unaware and uncaring of the danger they were in with any heavy vehicles/b doubles turning left there.

I'm all for the tourism and the benefits it brings but it may be getting time that the Jacaranda Committee and council may need to start erecting temporary signage reminding visitors of the dangers, road rules and what is required of them as well before there is an injury or worse .

Also maybe set times during the day for half an hour to an hour where sections of Turf st temporarily close to through traffic to accommodate tourists needs to be looked at.

Kristie-Anne Bridges: I was driving along turf street on the weekend, doing the speed limit when I saw a gentleman standing near the side of the road then all of a sudden he nearly walks straight out in front of me. I hit the brakes & luckily he decided to look & stop & an accident was avoided. I didn't abuse this man for his actions & continued on driving. I do however think that on the information being provided to visitors it could have something about those streets being high traffic areas to avoid accidents.

Justine Webber: It's a beautiful time of year. People come from all over the world to see it. For 2 weeks, locals should just take a chill pill, slow down, be amused instead of angered or frustrated. Appreciate the beauty. Maybe even get out of your own cars and take a few moments to enjoy the Jacarandas from ground level.

Tim Ashbrooke: I think it's fantastic that we're becoming internationally known for our trees. Yes, some risky pic taking occurs, but just be extra vigilant this time of year and smile and think about the tourist dollars going into our local businesses and economy. Tolerance and patience will go a long way. Let's show them pleasant hospitality and watch more of them come to town.

Desley Greensill McClymont: If you need to SLOW down for them do so it's only for a couple of weeks I am sure if you owned a small business that relies on Jacaranda or the July races to boost your business you wouldn't care were they stood.

Theresa Kelly: So I think what is obvious is that better traffic control and pedestrian management is needed..So that our visitors are kept safe and the locals are not disadvantaged 



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