High­way sec­ond worst

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - An­drea Falvo

ROADS iden­ti­fied as some of the Far North’s worst will be over­hauled in a move to im­prove safety for all mo­torists.

So far this year, 20 peo­ple have lost their lives on roads across the re­gion.

While the fa­tal five – speed, drink and drug driv­ing, no seat belts, fa­tigue and dis­trac­tion – are of­ten con­tribut­ing fac­tors to fa­tal crashes, road con­di­tions can also play a part.

A Trans­port and Main Roads (TMR) spokesman said the depart­ment con­tin­ued to in­vest in the state-con­trolled road net­work to sup­port Queens­land’s grow­ing pop­u­la­tion, with fund­ing al­lo­cated to build­ing, main­tain­ing and op­er­at­ing roads across the state.

The Bruce High­way has been iden­ti­fied as the worst stretch of road in North Queens­land, with 925 se­ri­ous crashes be­tween Jan­uary 1, 2008 and De­cem­ber 31, 2017.

The Cap­tain Cook High­way was sec­ond worst, with 379 se­ri­ous crashes, fol­lowed by the Kennedy High­way (318).

TMR in­ves­ti­gated road safety be­tween Cairns and Port Dou­glas in 2016, find­ing most of the traf­fic de­mand and crashes were on the busy sec­tion be­tween Florence St and Buchan Point.

As a re­sult, TMR is de­liv­er­ing a $25 mil­lion pack­age of safety works along this sec­tion as a mat­ter of ur­gency, funded through TMR’s Tar­geted Road Safety Pro­gram.

The depart­ment has also fast-tracked a $2.21 mil­lion project to im­prove safety for road users and pedes­tri­ans by sig­nal­is­ing the in­ter­sec­tion of Cap­tain Cook High­way and Clifton Rd.

TMR is also pro­gress­ing $1.65 mil­lion in plan­ning projects to fur­ther ex­am­ine safety and traf­fic flow on Cap­tain Cook High­way be­tween Florence St and Yorkeys Knob round­about.

“The stud­ies will likely iden­tify a range of po­ten­tial im­prove­ments, which may in­clude road widen­ing, ad­di­tional turn­ing lanes and in­ter­sec­tion up­grades,” the Trans­port and Main Roads spokesman said.

Trans­port and Main Roads is de­liv­er­ing a $25 mil­lion pack­age of safety works be­tween Florence St, Cairns and Buchan Point, Port Dou­glas.

Some of the works have been com­pleted and in­clude:

* Im­proved safety at pri­or­ity in­ter­sec­tions, in­clud­ing Lily St;

* In­stalled guardrail near Aeroglen to re­duce the risk of se­ri­ous crashes;

* In­stalled green paint treat­ment be­tween Gat­ton St and Strat­ford Con­nec­tion Rd to raise mo­torists’ aware­ness of cy­clists;

* Ex­ten­sion of right-turn lanes at the Grove St and Up­ward St in­ter­sec­tions; and

* In­stalled pedes­trian safety fenc­ing on a busy sec­tion of Sheri­dan St, where there has been fa­tal­i­ties.

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