Council action follows two crashes on Kirrawee bend within 11 days

Two crashes within 10 days on a dangerous bend at Kirrawee have sparked urgent action by Sutherland Shire Council.

Improved reflective warning signs will be installed at both ends of the bend between Forest Road and Hunter Street.

The first accident occurred on Monday June 1 when a driver lost control of a car, which knocked over the front brick retaining wall of a house.

On Thursday June 11, a truck driver lost control while travelling northbound in Hunter Street and the vehicle collided with a car before crashing through the guardrail on the northern edge of Forest Road.

"There have been reports that the truck's brakes failed," a council staff report said.

The accidents were reported to the council by a resident, whom traffic officers met to discuss potential mitigation measures.

"Improved advanced warning signage will be installed, with an expected installation of late June / early July and traffic volumes and speed data is to be collected on the approaches to the bend in the last week of June or the first week in July," the report said.

"Further feasibility and scoping of digital signage, traffic calming and physical barriers will be undertaken with a report on the findings planned for tabling at the September meeting of the Sutherland Traffic and Traffic Safety Committee."

The report said "an assessment of the reported details of the crashes revealed it is very unlikely additional infrastructure, traffic calming, sign etc. could have prevented or minimised the threat posed by the truck without operation of its brakes".

"However, infrastructure, traffic calming and / or signage could be improved in both Forest Road and Hunter Street on the approaches to the bend that could reduce the risk and severity of damage caused by the first crash."

Other options that were discussed included:

  • "Improved advanced warning signage and advisory speed signs in Forest Road and Hunter Street on approach to the bend - currently there is no advanced warning signage in Forest Road and the signage in Hunter Street is faded.
  • "Speed activated digital advanced warning signage - this sign detects driving speeds and provides a digital advanced warning to drivers based on approach speed.
  • "Traffic calming - lane narrowing treatments including kerb blisters and concrete central medians islands are able to be constructed on both approaches to the bend without impacting parking at residential frontages or property access. Additionally, flexible bollards can be installed along the centre line around the bend, without impacting property access, to increase the approach angle which will require drivers to slow.
  • "Physical barriers - a 9.8 m long jersey kerb (concrete barrier) along the kerbline at the frontage of 6 Hunter Street was discussed. This would have reduced the chances of the vehicle in the first crash from entering 6 Hunter Street; however, the risk of injury to the driver of the vehicle is increased."