NOWHERE TO GO: Access stairs at Safety Beach appear to lead directly into the creek.
NOWHERE TO GO: Access stairs at Safety Beach appear to lead directly into the creek. Trevor Veale

Staircase to nowhere raises questions

A NEW set of stairs at Safety Beach that appears to lead directly into a body of water has left local residents scratching their heads.

The stairs, currently under construction by Coffs Harbour City Council, should provide access to Safety Beach.

However, when Darkum Creek fills during high tide, the stairway leads directly into the coastal creek system.

Safety Beach resident Maggie Marks says she struggles to see the sense in building the steps where they are.

"When the water comes in, the steps lead directly into the water, making them unusable and access to the beach impossible," she said.

"As residents, we are fed up with not having access to the beach."

Ms Marks said more infrastructure could be the solution to the problem.

"We'd like to see them build a break wall - like the one at Woolgoolga Lake - to stop the water from coming in.

"I contacted council and said if they're not going to build a break wall, they may as well put a diving board at the bottom of the steps."

While the stairs will provide full access to the beach when the creek is empty, Ms Marks said in her 15 years living at Safety Beach, the creek was full more often than not.

A CHCC spokeswoman said alternative access to the beach was available nearby.

"As the opening of the creek and the water levels change periodically, an alternate dry access, 200m south off Safety Beach Dr, was constructed in 2000.

"This consists of a raised timber ramp and stairs allowing continual beach access."

However, Ms Marks said those steps were too steep for many residents to use.



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