Another two lives lost on Rutleys RoadINTERACTIVE

DEADLY STRETCH: Trees and ditches remain close to the edge of the driving pavement along some sections of Rutleys Road between Doyalson and Wyee. Picture: Fairfax Media
Nanjing Night Net

DESPITE millions of dollars having been spent improving the condition of Rutleys Road in recent years, the notorious“death corridor” has claimed another two lives.

An 82-year-old man and his wife, 84, died when their car left the road and crashed into a ditch at Mannering Park on March 29.

Eight people have now lost their lives on Rutleys Road in as many years.

The road stretches for nine kilometres from Doyalson to Wyee, and is split by the Lake Macquarie and Wyong Shire boundary.

Wyong Shire Council has spent2.5 million on Rutleys Road since March, 2014.

“This funding has allowed significant upgrading to the road pavement, tree clearing, new signage and line marking, new pavement on the shoulder as well as the provision of safety fencing along the road to improve driver safety,” a council spokesperson said.

Improving road safety through major works and driver education was a priority for the council which was committed toreducing the road toll, they said.

Lake Macquarie City Council has also spent millions improving the road.

Locals say millions of dollars more is needed to fix the route properly, and some have called for the road to become astate government responsibility.

But Lake Macquarie MP Greg Piper said money alone would not solve the problem.

“While it is distressing to learn about last week’s accident, there is a whole range of things going on here and not all of them are related to the road which has been significantly improved in recent years,” Mr Piper said.

“My advice on this particular case is that a medical condition was the major contributing factor.

“But I also recognise that if a car leaves Rutleys Road the adjoining terrain is very unforgiving. The question is why are they leaving the road, and the answer is mostly related to speed, distraction and other factors which have little to do with the road’s condition.

“Speeding has always been a problem on that road which is naturally winding and rural in nature, but the strongest point I can make is that people need to drive to the conditions.”

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