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Vehicle chains a must for Ben Lomond winter visitors


The Parks and Wildlife Service today reminded motorists travelling to Ben Lomond National Park during winter that carrying chains is compulsory.

PWS Northern Region Manager Chris Colley said the primary concern was that visitors to Ben Lomond travel to and from the village safely, and for that reason it was compulsory for all vehicles to carry chains between June and September.

Mr Colley said that the only vehicular access to the village, Jacobs Ladder, was in an alpine area at an altitude between 1300 and 1400 metres and was regularly affected by ice.

"Visitors need to understand that conditions on the mountain can change very quickly and vehicles already at the village can be faced with dangerous snow and/or icy conditions as they leave and descend Jacobs Ladder.

"For motorists' own safety and that of other visitors, it's imperative to drive to the conditions, carry chains and fit the chains where directed by signage or PWS staff.

"The requirement for chains includes both two-wheel and four-wheel drive vehicles."
Mr Colley said that warning and advisory signs had been upgraded to inform visitors of the conditions.

"Following recent snowfalls, last weekend was particularly busy.

"There were no traffic incidents on Jacobs Ladder and the PWS thanks visitors for cooperating with winter access arrangements by carrying chains or taking the bus."

Chains can be bought or hired from some motoring accessory retailers and the Jacobs Ladder bus service is available when ski lifts are operating.

The PWS recently completed a $250,000 works program on Jacobs Ladder to improve the safety of the road. The requirement to carry and use chains where directed complements this work.