Many people living in Canberra on this day in 1966 were faced with a choice between taking a shortcut to work and risking their lives everyday. It may seem a foolish choice, but many tended to choose the latter.
Sections of the partially constructed Mugga Arterial road were in the process of being blasted with explosives, and workers had been driving 40-ton scoops along one-way stretches of the road, making the road a dangerous place for driving.
Not only did the road pose a threat to the motorists, but they caused damage to the road, having driven over areas which had been gravelled or primed, causing hundreds of pounds worth of damage.
But the temptation of driving a shorter distance to work was too great for many motorists in the Woden Valley area. "The trouble is that people living in the Woden Valley area know that by using the arterial roadway they can save themselves about five miles when travelling to such areas as Red Hill, Narrabundah or Fyshwick," said the site engineer Mr J Haskins. "They are possibly prolonging the completion date of the project, but more important, risking death to save a few minutes driving."
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