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Moonscape roadways

There is an elephant in the room, when it comes municipal decision making.

There is an elephant in the room, when it comes municipal decision making. Roads!

What do our municipal governments do for us, if it isn’t providing safe, passable roads to drive on?

Our tax dollars purchase garbage pick-up, minimal in rural settings compared to a town.

Some of the budget goes toward clean safe drinking water.

And there is the cost of the disposal of sewage. Roads, however, are one of the most costly and most critical municipal services.

Our roads have become unsafe this spring. Just a couple of days ago, a farmer hauling his cow in a stock trailer had an accident that may have cost him a cow. It certainly cost him a day, a great
deal of stress and whatever damage was done to truck and trailer.

This accident occurred just a few hundred yards past a ‘moonscape’ piece of Highway 83, near the junction to Woodnorth. Did the driver try and dodge the road holes? Or did oncoming traffi c mean he had to take the bumps? Such could be the scenario for this or for a future traveler.

On Sunday, a rough rail crossing caused a trailer to pop off the truck ball hitch on Highway 21. I witnessed this incident. It was a tiny trailer and there was no accident in this incident.
Paved highways and some larger gravel roads are provincial responsibility.

Highway 83, north and south of the TransCanada is wrecked.

Highway 24 at a point a few miles west of Highway 21 has become nearly impassable.

Municipal gravel roads are the worst in years. To their credit Wallace-Woodworth has filled some deep holes – the kind that a big truck would bottom out on, and they have some signage up, on the road

I often drive. But the road needs to be graded, often. A glance, side to side and you notice the water in the surrounding sloughs appears to be higher than the road surface.

Well, that can’t actually be the case, but we are saturated!

The last reeve of Wallace promised better roads. Unnatural weather nullifi ed that promise. Apparently, we have taken our decent roads of the past, for granted.

The province and the municipalities – the taxpayer – has a huge problem this spring.

A core service is shot to smithereens. It is not all oilfield traffic. There’s lots of heavy traffic. On some roads, pretty ordinary traffic.

On a morning drive, a road can be rough, but well signed regarding the breaks. By that evening there can be sink holes that can put traffic in the ditch. When you consider how much it costs to employ fire fighters and their equipment, ambulance, and RCMP, not to mention the MPI payout, and in the case of the May 12 accident on Highway 83, the veterinarian and the tow truck...that’s an expensive few hours.

Governments need to grasp this and refocus their long term as well as immediate plans.

Manitoba and municipal roads are an unsafe disgrace.