Road maintenance guide protects waterways
Media release: 16 August 2012
The Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) has released a field guide to assist in the management of unsealed roads – helping to protect the environment and reduce maintenance costs.
OEH Acting Chief Executive, Dr Kate Wilson said poor management of unsealed roads in some areas of NSW was causing environmental damage and was leading to costly repairs.
“Poor management of these roads can lead to erosion and sediment runoff which in turn can flow into local waterways and cause environmental harm,” Dr Wilson said.
“Sediment runoff can cause siltation of river channels and fill wetlands. It also reduces light penetration and can lead to a loss of habitat and spawning sites for some fish.
“Poor management can also be a safety hazard and can lead to expensive repairs.”
Dr Wilson said OEH staff recognised the problem and set about resolving the issue.
“A field guide was initially developed for use in National Parks and this has now been refined and released for wider use,” she said.
“The guide provides support for those looking after unsealed roads to reduce soil erosion and minimise the amount of sediment entering the waterways.
“It recommends regular maintenance, with additional inspections after heavy rain. It also provides practical advice on identifying problems and offers hands-on solutions.
“It is free and has been designed to fit into a vehicle’s glove box and we’re hoping that it will become an indispensible tool for many land and road managers.”
Copies of the guide will be sent to most local councils and other land management agencies responsible for unsealed road maintenance and are also available from: http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/stormwater/publications.htm#unsealed
Contact: Roger Bell
Page last updated: 16 August 2012