Trucks to miss out
New roadside stop proposal for Tocumwal rejected
Roads and Maritime Services has declined a request to build a new truck stop parking area on available land at Tocumwal, according to Berrigan Shire Council.
Council was liaising with RMS in the hope of developing interim measures for trucks wishing to park to the side of the Newell Hwy (Dean St) at Tocumwal.
The unmarked area once used by trucks for parking is now inaccessible due to roadside tree plantings as part of a council beautification project.
Berrigan Shire said in an effort to rectify the unfortunate consequence, it offered to donate 14 acres of land so that RMS could build and maintain a truck stop area.
‘‘The RMS say they don’t have much funding for this (project),’’ shire general manager Rowan Perkins said.
‘‘The point is though, this is a national highway and not just about Tocumwal — the trucks that stop there are mainly driven down from Queensland and northern New South Wales.
‘‘We’ve been trying to get (Member for Murray) Adrian Piccoli to help find solutions as well.’’
Despite turning down council’s proposal, RMS said they would work with Berrigan Shire Council to help find an interim truck parking solution at Tocumwal.
‘‘The NSW Government agrees there is a need for heavy vehicle parking areas and decoupling bays for heavy vehicle operators along the Newell and this has been high- lighted in the Newell Highway Corridor Strategy released this year,’’ an RMS spokesperson said.
‘‘In the 2015/16 budget the NSW Government announced a record $75.4 million investment for the Newell.’’
In recent weeks, truck drivers have used a small dirt road near the river, just south of Tocumwal, to park for overnight stays.
Tocumwal’s Marion Farrar, whose husband is a truck driver, said the situation ‘‘is not good enough’’.
She said finding an alternative parking solution at Tocumwal should be a priority for RMS due to the town’s border location.
‘‘There were several trucks who had no option but to camp there (on the dirt road) during the recent rain event with no proper amenities,’’ she said.
‘‘Two weeks ago, it appeared a local trucking company let the trucks park privately on their land, but that’s not sustainable with harvest coming up.
‘‘If there’s a Newell Highway plan, why isn’t this issue included in the plan and why wasn’t it thought about by council before trees were planted? It needs a long term plan.’’