It’s hard to believe that a government can sit on its hands and allow a key piece of infrastructure to be at the mercy of the weather – especially when it’s the source of fierce public frustration.
Cessnock Road at Testers Hollow spent almost five days closed during the past week because of floodwater – the second lengthy closure in less than a year.
If last year’s April super storm, which caused a 16-day closure of the road, didn’t spur the government into action, then the community needs to rally to demonstrate why this issue can’t continue to be dismissed as it has been for decades.
The Mercury is launching its Raise the Road campaign in an effort to finally get this problem solved.
Given that Cessnock Road is now a key route between Maitland and the Hunter Expressway, you’d think the government would have a renewed focus on its upkeep.
Labor has promised to fix the road, but it is not in government, and the Coalition has remained quiet on the issue in recent times.
A petition, started by residents after the April storm, called for the government to fix the road and attracted more than 1000 signatures. Every new signature makes a difference.
So sign the petition and participate in the public debate to let our elected leaders know that we won’t settle for inaction.
The biggest challenge now is to not let apathy set in as the floodwater recedes.
Even when the road is open and the inconvenience is gone for the time being, it’s important that the community continues to argue for these necessary upgrades – otherwise we will be back to square one next time the road floods.