Highways on the agenda
Our problem roads should be state election priorities
RACQ is leading calls to all political parties in the lead-up to the 2017 Queensland election to commit to upgrading roads in the Wide Bay and Burnett to save lives and future-proof the region.
The state’s peak motoring body named the Burnett Highway and D’Aguilar Highway safety upgrades among the priority projects needed in the region.
RACQ head of public policy Rebecca Michael said it was time safety was put at the top of the political agenda.
“Not only have we already lost 66 lives on Wide Bay/ Burnett and north coast roads this year, hundreds of people have been seriously injured,” Dr Michael said.
“This is why we must see all parties commit to investing in safety upgrades.”
Improvements needed include road widening and wide centreline treatments, the installation of safety barriers and rumble strips, along with additional overtaking lanes and removal of roadside hazards.
“These enhancements to the Burnett Highway will improve the safety and productivity of what is already used as an inland alternative route,” Dr Michael said.
“Our political parties need to prove they’re planning for the future – Queensland can only thrive if the right investment is put into road and transport infrastructure.”
The Queensland Police Service’s annual statistical review for 2016-17 showed the Burnett Highway had a range of other safety issues.
The rate of unlawful use of motor vehicles increased by 26.1 per cent, but the number of traffic and related offences across the district decreased by 17 per cent.
Wide Bay Burnett District Officer Superintendent Craig Hawkins said there were positives from the review but still some worrying trends.
“It is positive to see offences on our roads decline,” Supt Hawkins said.
“However, 2182 in the past year is still too high and police will continue to focus on traffic offenders to ensure the roads are safe.”