Police up patrols on Lachlan Valley Way

Police are increasing patrols on the Lachlan Valley Way between the Grenfell Road turnoff and Gooloogong in an effort to reduce the amount of accidents occurring on the stretch of road.

Cowra Police Inspector Adam Beard said police recognised an increase in crashes however couldn’t highlight a pattern or cause.

During August, one man died and a teenage girl was flown to Orange Hospital in two separate incidents, while most recently a man reportedly in his 80s was airlifted to Orange Hospital after driving a vehicle into the rear of a truck on Thursday, September 28.

Inspector Adam Beard noted fatigue and alcohol and drug impairment as key areas of concern, and native wildlife entering the road also a contributing factor.

“Police have increased patrols of the particular stretch of road and are conducting more random breath and drug tests on this roadway as well,” he said.

“There’s been some serious incidents including fatals which is very concerning to us.

“These accidents include both locals in the area and persons travelling through the Cowra area.”

Police have issued a “special warning” for rural workers, who commute during hours of darkness, to take extra care.

“Any rural workers doing shift work or long hours, starting or finishing during hours of darkness, should be particularly careful and ensure they’re fit to drive,” Inspector Beard said.

“What we advise is to only drive when well rested.

“If you’re feeling fatigued take a break or change drivers.

“Of course if you’ve been drinking or are affected by drugs or medication, do not drive.”

Cowra Mayor Bill West said council has been “lobbying and advocating for improvement to the Lachlan Valley Way and will continue to do so”. 

“Council sees the Lachlan Valley Way as a very important traffic corridor that links Yass through to Forbes and Condobolin,” Mayor Bill West said.

“It needs proper safety. The importance of safety on our roads is a concern for us all.”