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Road upgrade issue

Solomone Rabulu
Monday, February 05, 2018

ACCIDENT deterrents in communities prone to road accidents must be maintained or upgraded and they should never be removed, says Opposition parliamentarian Ro Kiniviliame Kiliraki.

He made the comment in reference to roadworks being conducted in Navatuvula Village, Naitasiri.

Mr Kiliraki said the Fiji Roads Authority (FRA) was wasting public funds by dismantling road infrastructure erected to ensure the safety of pedestrians and motorists.

He claimed road replacement and reconstruction roadworks in Navatuvula were not taken well by residents and those driving through the village.

Mr Kiliraki said the high rate of road fatalities and injury to the villagers had prompted previous governments to install and continuously upgrade road humps at both ends of the village.

"There are five humps through Navatuvula Village because it was prone to high traffic movement," Mr Kiliraki said.

"Fulton Hogan Hiways began with its roadworks in the village last weekend and had been replacing these road humps with new designs making the humps oblivious to the drivers.

"This can lead to serious vehicle damages as well as increased fatalities."

Mr Kiliraki said there was no reason to waste state resources dismantling anything that had served its purpose well for decades.

In a statement last Thursday, the FRA said there was a service request raised during the Bose Ni Tikina that the existing humps were too low and did not serve as a speed deterrent.

"FRA also assessed the humps and confirmed that these were not to the standard Watt's profile, thus the decision to replace with proper standard humps," the statement said.

"Watt's profile humps are used internationally and are the outcome of safety assessments and design improvements.

"This was done on the best interest and safety of the local villages."

The FRA said it believed the statement made by Mr Kiliraki could be a result of misunderstanding between the information provided by Naitasiri Provincial Council representatives and the village elders.

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