Tragedies bring calls for upgrade of highway
BURDEKIN MP Dale Last says more needs to be done to improve the Bruce Highway between Townsville and Mackay.
Yesterday’s crashes brought the July toll for the notorious stretch to five after a man died when his car rolled at Mount Ossa, north of Mackay, on July 9.
Mr Last said yesterday’s deaths would leave a big hole in a community already doing it tough.
“It’s shocking for Bowen and shocking for Burdekin to think that you could have two separate accidents so close together and have the loss of so many lives, it’s unbelievable,” he said.
“Particularly to lose someone as young as 15 with their life in front of them is so tragic.”
Mr Last said it was the start of the tourism, cane crushing and harvesting season, so congestion on the highway was at its peak.
“At this time of year, we’ve got a lot of backpackers going through Bowen and the Burdekin picking fruit and vegetables and it’s that time when the communities really come alive,” he said.
“These incidents just highlight there is still a lot of work to be done on the Bruce Highway.”
The three deaths at Home Hill brought the Northern region’s road toll to 36 for the year.
The road toll for the Central region, which includes Bowen, also rose to 36 after the 15- year- old girl died south of the town.