Traffic jams drive violence

Traffic congestion Streeton Way, Berwick and Soldiers Road roadabout. 183809_03

By Jessica Anstice

 Soldiers Road in Berwick is causing havoc for drivers trying to commute to and from work and to and from schools.

Berwick resident Sven Kerslake said during school hours Soldiers Road is heavily congested due to overpopulation and people trying to use it to avoid Berwick’s Clyde Road or Kangan Drive.

“From Narre Warren South to Dandenong South for work, for example, takes 15 to20 minutes in regular traffic and anywhere between 45 on a good run or one hour to an hour 20 on a bad run,” he said.

“I would like to see better infrastructure in our small inner suburbs but it is hard to do this without destroying more land which is never great, but what do you do with this mess that they’ve made?

“No wonder everyone is moving further out.”

Mr Kerslake added he would also like to see stricter policies for international licenses used in Australia and he agrees with the tough policies on drink driving.

Eden Rise Estate Berwick resident Earl Mumford travels into the city on his motorcycle most days.

He said he can travel to the city in 50 minutes via motorcycle during peak hours.

“The trains are often replaced by buses and it took me 1.5 hours via the bus, train debacle,” he said.

“There are a number of houses for sale around the proposed Minta Farm estate off Soldiers Road.

“If you cannot get to work in a timely manner this has social and family time consequences.”

Mr Mumford said he suspects travel stress feeds into mortgage stress, family violence and children who don’t see their parents.

“Traffic congestion should not be used as an excuse for family violence, indeed, family violence is likely to be present before stress due to traffic congestion,” Together We Can’s collective impact facilitator Fiona Cost said.”Family violence occurs when a perpetrator exercises power and control over another person. It involves coercive and abusive behaviours designed to intimidate, humiliate, undermine and isolate.

“People who get stressed in traffic, particularly with children in the car, may benefit from talking to someone who can support them to identify stress triggers and how best to respond in stressful situations.”

Mr Mumford said his motorcycle is the only reliable way to get to the CBD.

“Soldiers road is ridiculous,” he said.

“Travelling south to north from Clyde to Berwick could take a car 30 to 40 minutes at 8:30 on weekdays.”

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