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Keep Otago’s roads clean and safe

Media Release - 07 May 2014

The Otago Regional Council (ORC) is urging dairy farmers, sharemilkers, and truckies to keep southern roads and waterways effluent-free and safe over coming weeks.

As part of the annual winter grazing and farm changeover taking place from now until early June, many sharemilkers are shifting stock between Southland, Central Otago, and North Otago.

To minimise muck spilled onto roads, ORC reminds all dairy farmers transferring stock to ensure animals are prepared properly before cartage, by standing them off green feed overnight.

ORC director environmental monitoring and operations Jeff Donaldson said motorist often complain to the ORC around now, after their cars have been soiled from effluent spilled on Otago roads.

“We have sent information on our seven effluent storage tank sites to all Otago and Southland stock moving companies, and expect drivers to empty effluent into them,” he said.

Such spillages are hazardous as roads can become slippery, and with frosts can be even more treacherous, particularly for motorcyclists.

“Farmers and truckies should do the right thing. Standing stock before moving them and avoiding overflow from truck effluent storage tanks are simple steps to avoid creating messy and potential dangerous driving conditions,” Mr Donaldson said.

He said farmers must be sure to keep stock well away from waterways.

“We don’t want to see pugging of waterways by stock, or damage to the bed of any stream, no matter how small it is,” he said.

Motorists can report stock effluent spills to the ORC Pollution Hotline on 0800 800 033.

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