Big bill due to rough roads

Central and North Rural Weekly - - NEWS - GE­ORDI OFFORD Ge­[email protected]­ral­weekly.com.au

SOME $20,000 over 12 months – that is how much cat­tle­man and live­stock trans­porter Joe Mooney has spent re­pair­ing his trucks.

The dam­age was caused af­ter the trucks trav­elled on rough roads in the Gympie area.

Mr Mooney owns JD and PA Mooney Live­stock Trans­port, as well as Jo­moco Drought­mas­ter Stud in Glas­ton­bury.

“The roads are atro­cious,” he said.

“In the last year I’ve bro­ken two main spring packs, a steer­ing arm and gear­box mounts and we aren’t even driv­ing that fast. It’s just from road-re­lated fa­tigue.”

He said the road dam­age on stretches around Glas­ton­bury, Kilki­van-Tansey Rd and the Wide Bay High­way (be­tween Kilki­van and Goomeri) were dan­ger­ous to live­stock and drivers.

“I would have no doubts peo­ple have lost or in­jured live­stock while driv­ing on these roads,” he said.

“I haven’t per­son­ally but if some­one hit the road hard with­out know­ing what it’s like it would cause in­juries for sure.

“Some of the wooden bridges have been re­duced to sin­gle lane be­cause of weight re­stric­tions and some­times peo­ple don’t see the give-way sign.”

Mr Mooney said the road had been get­ting worse since flood­ing in 2013.

“It’s tak­ing us longer to do our jobs be­cause we are hav­ing to pull up and check our loads more of­ten,” he said.

“A few weeks ago I did a job which should have only taken four hours each way but it took me six – that’s two hours I should have been spend­ing on the next job.

“In a lot of cases there are no al­ter­na­tive routes to go on, so you have to al­low the ex­tra time.”

He said the roads were in bet­ter con­di­tion fur­ther north.

“We cringe ev­ery time we think about hav­ing to drive on the roads,” he said.

“There are big­ger trucks that use the roads around Char­ters Tow­ers and Emer­ald and the road is bet­ter to drive on than it is here.”

While the roads were im­pact­ing trucks, Mr Mooney said there was also a fi­nan­cial strain.

“We can’t charge by the hour,” he said.

“We’re get­ting less in­come be­cause it’s tak­ing longer for us to do what we have to.”

In a state­ment pro­vided to Ru­ral Weekly, a spokesper­son from the De­part­ment of Trans­port and Main Roads said re­seal projects were sched­uled for the Gympie area in the com­ing months.

“Re­cent in­spec­tions of Run­ning Creek Bridge, Kilki­van-Tansey Rd, Wide Bay High­way and GympieWoolooga Rd have not iden­ti­fied any ar­eas re­quir­ing main­te­nance works at this time,” they said.

“How­ever we are car­ry­ing out planned re­seal works in the area over the com­ing months.”

Works in­clude:

■ Re­seal­ing a 200m sec­tion and 470m sec­tion of Bau­ple-Woolooga Rd in­ter­sec­tion

■ Re­seal­ing two 100m sec­tions ei­ther side of the Run­ning Creek Rd in­ter­sec­tion on Brooweena-Woolooga Rd.

SEE­ING RED: Joe Mooney says he has spent $20,000 in the past 12 months to re­pair dam­age to his trucks caused by driv­ing on the roads around Gympie. PHOTO: FILEKilki­van-Tansey Rd, west of the Cin­nebar Rd in­ter­sec­tion ■ Re­seal­ing a 2km sec­tion of the Wide Bay High­way near the Bruce High­way in­ter­sec­tion and an­other 680m sec­tion near the

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