WOMBEYAN CAVES ROAD

Wombeyan Caves Road travels through some of the most diverse and picturesque Southern Highlands landscapes. From green rolling pasture to huge gorges and wide horizon views of the Blue Mountains National Park. This road should be well maintained and treasured. It is not. The RTA underfunds this road and the unsealed section is now considered by residents to be dangerous and in some places a death trap just waiting for an opportunity.

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02 / 02 / 15 From River Island to Goodmans Ford, Canyons and Washaways.

Once you leave River Island, the road rapidly becomes a goat track. Gouges sometimes a foot deep, washaways. Fun for 4Wd's but bone shaking. This is a Tourist Road?


01 / 02 / 15 It's closed and not before time.

When will Council and RMS learn that a quick fix is no fix at all?


12 / 11 / 12 Road Edge Collapse

Road Closed After Truck Crash Friday, 03 August 2012 06:31 inShare Wombeyan Caves Road will be closed for much of today following a truck crash yesterday. The crash happened west of the Wollondilly River, and has closed the steep and narrow road in both directions. The road is open as far as Goodman’s Ford on the river, but it will not be possible to get through to Wombeyan Caves, until the wreckage is cleared. Motorists heading to the caves will have to detour via Goulburn.


12 / 11 / 12 Costly Road Surface

“Steve has had two flat tyres in the last two months and has had to repair the sump on my car twice in as many months due to rocks ripping out holes in it.”


01 / 10 / 12 Danger on and off the Dirt

“An accident we were involved in near our entrance gate, when an oncoming car came at us on the wrong side of the road. As for that hidden bump on the downhill run to Mittagong - I am well aware of it, but can never seem to pick it, so always try to avoid it by driving on the wrong side of the road, despite the double unbroken lines, making sure I keep my eyes well and truly on the lookout for possible oncoming cars”


02 / 06 / 08 The corrugation bounce!

On 9.4.08 Ron Carr's vehicle skidded on the very bad corrugations onear Bullio Station. The time was approximately 4.45 p.m. The vehicle is a white Ford Falcon Panel Van. Ron is a long term resident who has to use this road every week to shop for groceries. I've been a passenger in his van and can vouch for the fact that he is a very careful driver. Thankfully, although he was shaken he wasn't hurt. The car wasn't so lucky The panel beater's repair bill will leave Ron with an excess of $500 to pay. He's retired and has to live on a small fixed income. Paying for these repairs will be a hardship.


02 / 05 / 08 Saved by a tree!

The road between "The Tunnel" and The Lookout is narrow, potholed and only fenced by a single strand cable which must date from WWII. Here's a typical incident. Swerve to avoid an animal or a pothole and ZIP! you're looking at a 100m drop.


01 / 05 / 08 What the Council did then

Council did follow through on this in 2008 and some parts of the road are still in a good place as a result. Council have sent this text to us as of yesterday. "29 July 2008 Council has commenced a program of significant improvements to the road pavement on Wombeyan Caves Road from the Lookout through to Bullio Station. The improvements involve placing additional pavement to cover the existing bauxite surface. The material being used is a product called “roadstone” that has been sourced from Blue Circle Southern Cement at Marulan. The material contains a good mix of limestone spallings bound together by the natural clays in the material. Roadstone has been used successfully on a number of other roads in the shire and is similar to the limestone used elsewhere along Wombeyan Caves Road. In order to properly compact a road pavement, it is critical that a certain moisture content be present in the material. In the case of materials containing clay, this can result in the material being initially soft. Once this moisture content dries out a sound pavement results. In the case of the recent work on Wombeyan Caves Road, a combination of damp and cold conditions together with constant shade from overhanging trees has not allowed the roadstone to dry out and harden. This has led to the sloppy conditions that currently exist. To continue to work with this material in current weather conditions would not assist the situation. Regretfully Council has made the decision to suspend the work on Wombeyan Caves Road and to schedule the work to recommence in September, weather permitting. Council regrets the inconvenience to users of the road and will continue to monitor the situation."


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02 / 02 / 15 At last, Media attention.

Long overdue stories starting to appear.


29 / 02 / 12 WC Road Closed

Two roads closed on the southern highlands Wednesday, 29 February 2012 12:46 inShare The National Parks and Wildlife Service has closed Wombeyan Caves Road west of Bullio this afternoon due to a land slip. Torrential rain has totally washed away a section of the dirt road just west of the Tallygang Mountain Road and it is impassable to all vehicles. Wingecarribee Council says it is likely to be closed for sometime while the damage is inspected. Meantime, NSW Forests has closed Penrose Forest Road to all traffic until further notice due to flooding of the causeway over Paddy's River. There is also water over the causeway leading into Belanglo State Forest near Berrima and access is only available to 4WD vehicles. NSW Forests is monitoring the condition of the road and it may be closed to all traffic if the rain continues.


16 / 07 / 08 NRMA considers road "unsafe."

In telephone advice to a visitor who was stranded , the local NRMA has advised that they do not service this area at night, and the road is a contributing factor to that decision. Night time call outs can not be relied on as the current road surface and lack of safety fencing contributes to the unsealed section being considered "unsafe". So what are visitors to do if they break down?


02 / 06 / 08 A community disgrace

I called into your office on Tuesday and spoke with Felicity about Mr. Carr's problem with organising a weekly shopping trip. He came to live on our property when he retired and loves being here but is now in his 80's and finding it difficult to cope with the hazards of our unsealed road. His family live in the U.K.except for a brother who lives in Melbourne. He is a University lecturer who spends 6 months of the year lecturing in Berkley and is anxious to see this problem resolved before he flies out in August. The difficulty is the dangerous state of our neglected unsealed road. The Community Transport Service reluctantly offered to send a car out fortnightly which would drop him at Coles, give him two hours to shop and drive him home. This service would be cancelled at a moment's notice in 'inclement weather'. Ron's brother then volunteered to pay if we could find someone who wouldn't be scared off by our road. This happened to the owner of "Oakwood" who is in the same situation - after one trip his driver refused to tackle our road a second time. We approached a local handyman but he was too busy to take it on. Back to square one. I was faced with the daunting task of contacting every service in the Senior's Directory when I remembered Ms. Goward's newsletter inviting her constituents to contact her if they needed help. I also remembered her astute advice when she attended a meeting of our Road Action Group, after experiencing first hand what a hair-raising experience it is to drive on our unsealed road. I need to know if there are any other community service volunteer groups I could contact. If not, are there any low-cost or subsidised professional health care services. We want to do everything we can to help but I don't drive. Frank is a riding instructor who is often interstate for two week teaching trips. Most of our shopping is fitted in on the way home from teaching assignments. His free days are spent catching up with urgent jobs on the property. Right now however, Frank is giving up a day to take Ron shopping. We both feel that at his age, Ron shouldn't have to worry about the basic necessities of life. Anyone who lives on a rural property accepts the fact that we have to provide things like power, water, garbage disposal etc. etc. But access to Aged Care Services should be available to every Australian, no matter where they live. I can't blame the Transport Service for being reluctant to drive on our road. Only an off road enthusiast or an adrenalin junkie would find it an enjoyable experience. The blame lies with the Council/RTA for refusing to adequately fund the maintenance of our road.


11 / 05 / 08 A resident comment

All the feedback I get from other residents at the road meetings is that this corrugated section of the road is a major hazard, whether you have a four wheel drive or something like Ron's van. Reading the document produced by Council to justify their neglect made my blood boil. I was under the impression that in a Democracy, rates were used for the benefit of the people who paid those rates. Grading the dirt road a couple of times a year is like putting a band aid on a haemorrhage. $50,000 in annual rates seems like a excessive amount to be paying for a band aid!