The place where Mr Barrie died is to be made safer for pedestrians, councillors have decided.
The place where Mr Barrie died is to be made safer for pedestrians, councillors have decided. Allan Reinikka Rokacrossing

Fix killer crossing

THE WIDOW of a man who died outside a popular Rockhampton club said yesterday she was pleased that steps would finally be taken to make it safer to cross the road there.

Hazel Barrie saw her husband die when he was hit by a four-wheel-drive ute towing a horse float as he crossed Lion Creek Rd in Wandal.

Albert Edward Barrie had been celebrating his 82nd birthday at the Brothers Leagues Club (now the CQ Bid Leagues Club) and was crossing to a car parked on the other side of the road on the evening of July 9, 2009.

Yesterday members of Rockhampton Regional Council's infrastructure committee voted unanimously to lower the speed limit along Lion Creek Rd to 50kmh and to install a pedestrian light controlled crossing with a central refuge.

The measures were called for by Coroner Annette Hennessy after an inquest in Rockhampton in March this year.

When she was told of the decision yesterday, Mrs Barrie said: "This is what we had been calling for. It's too late for my husband but it could prevent another tragedy."

The road near the club was described by nearby residents as a death trap because it is busy, poorly lit, has no footpaths and the majority of car parking for the club is on the other side of the road.

"My personal opinion is that the club should have provided better facilities," said Mrs Barrie, who lives in West Rockhampton.

The inquest was told that the ute driver, Neil Vagg, had not been prosecuted over the accident. He said Mr Barrie was only a car length in front of his vehicle when he saw him and despite swerving and hitting the brakes, the impact was unavoidable.

Infrastructure committee chairman Stephen Schwarten said council officers had taken the coroner's recommendations extremely seriously and had provided councillors with detailed options to make the right decision.

Ms Hennessy required the council to give serious consideration to providing a suitable crossing appropriate for use by elderly and infirm people close to the club.

She also called for barriers to restrict access to the road from other areas near the club; more street lighting and a lower speed limit.

In September 2009 the council commissioned a study by McMurtrie Consulting Engineers which suggested a 40kmh limit, fencing to prevent jaywalking, restrictions for on-street parking and traffic lights or a roundabout at the Lion Creek-Exhibition Rd junction.

Councillors yesterday voted to allocate $100,000 to help pay for engineering work



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