A long road to up­grade

Central and North Burnett Times - - NEWS - Emily Smith

EV­ERY­BODY has a Mt Perry-Monto Rd tale to tell.

For Melinda Jones, the owner of Rain­bow Café, she got a flat tyre on an unsealed patch of the in­fa­mous high­way eight years ago.

“I ended up be­ing stuck in the dark, with no mo­bile phone ser­vice and with three kids – aged 10, 7 and 5,” she said.

“I waited for six hours... Three cars went past be­fore one fi­nally helped me.”

But sto­ries like this could soon be a thing of the past.

As re­ported in last week’s Cen­tral and North Bur­nett Times, a cru­cial 12km sec­tion of the Mt Perry-Monto Rd will soon be sealed.

The news has been met with cheers, sighs of re­lief and more than a few mut­ter­ings of “it’s about bloody time” from Monto res­i­dents.

For Melinda, she will no longer have to worry whether her de­liv­er­ies will ar­rive in one piece, and on time.

When it rains, de­liv­ery trucks of­ten have to de­tour through Eidsvold.

The ex­tra time this takes means she some­times runs out of stock.

Other times the bumpy dirt road can be so rough her stock gets bro­ken en route.

“One time sauce got smashed all over ev­ery­thing,” she re­mem­bered.

“It was hor­ri­ble try­ing to clean it all up.”

Monto Car­a­van Park man­ager Trevor An­der­son said he was re­lieved to hear the news.

“This (road up­grade) should have been done 30 years ago,” he said.

“I just can­not stress enough how ben­e­fi­cial this will be for Monto.

“We get lots of car­a­vans come in com­plain­ing about that road.”

Ratepay­ers and Res­i­dents As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Lex Dow agreed and said seal­ing this sec­tion of the road would ben­e­fit tourism and lo­cal businesses enor­mously.

“The road has been a def­i­nite de­ter­rent to car­a­van­ers,” he said.

“It also dis­suades po­ten­tial vis­i­tors from Bund­aberg, who could be out here ex­plor­ing their hin­ter­land.

“The road is just too haz­ardous and rough for many mo­torists.”

So, for the first time per­haps, a pos­i­tive story about the Mt Perry-Monto Rd has got ev­ery­one talk­ing.

PHOTO: EMILY SMITH

ABOUT TIME: Rain­bow Cafe owner Melinda Jones is among those happy about a road up­grade.

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