Tweed Shire councillors James Owen and Reece Byrnes next to the 'smiley face' speed sign in Kingscliff. They are seeking funding for 10 more from the state government after a successful trial. Photo: Scott Powick
Tweed Shire councillors James Owen and Reece Byrnes next to the 'smiley face' speed sign in Kingscliff. They are seeking funding for 10 more from the state government after a successful trial. Photo: Scott Powick

Campaign to expand ‘smiley signs’ for safety

A SUCCESSFUL trial of Tweed's 'smiley sign' has prompted a campaign to expand the road safety measure.

The electronic speed awareness sign, was given to the Tweed Shire Council by Transport for NSW as part of the Local Government Road Safety Program after motions were brought to council by James Owen and Reece Byrnes.

Since June last year, the sign has been trialled to see if it would help reduce speeding on residential streets at two spots in Casuarina and one in Kingscliff following consultation with the Casuarina Seaside Salt Residents Association.

The sign uses radar to monitor vehicle speeds and display messages according to whether the car is travelling at or below the posted speed limit.

Tweed Shire councillors James Owen and Reece Byrnes next to the 'smiley face' speed sign in Kingscliff. They are seeking funding for 10 more from the state government after a successful trial. Photo: Scott Powick
Tweed Shire councillors James Owen and Reece Byrnes next to the 'smiley face' speed sign in Kingscliff. They are seeking funding for 10 more from the state government after a successful trial. Photo: Scott Powick

For example, cars below the speed limit will receive a green smiley face and a "thank you" message displayed.

A vehicle over the speed limit by less than 10km/h will be met with a 'slow down' message with the speed shown.

A report tabled last week at the council meeting said the sign was effective at reducing speeds at all locations, with an average reduction of 8km/h while the sign was installed.

Councillors voted unanimously to apply for State and Federal Government funding for more of the smiley signs to be installed around the shire.

Cr James Owen said the goal was to fund 10 more of the solar-powered signs.

"They are detachable from the base, so you could install a base and move them around," he said.

"We often get representations at the Local Traffic Committee about installing speed cameras but the reality is speed cameras don't often get installed."

Cr Reece Byrnes said it was a good chance for the councillors to work bipartisanly.

"The community liked the fact it was a non-punitive reminder to slow down," he said.



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