A series of road upgrades are now complete along the Carnarvon Highway and are expected to deliver a real boost in safety and efficiency for freight operators.
Over $10 million in funding was delivered for two projects to support safer and more productive freight movements in Balonne Shire and the surrounding region.
“I have seen firsthand how critical efficient freight networks are to the national economy and indeed to all Australians, with the COVID-19 crisis showcasing just how vital the work of our freight operators is,” said Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz.
“These upgrades form part of a comprehensive package of works on the Carnarvon Highway with over $35 million worth of upgrades, jointly funded under HVSPP Rounds 5 and 6.
“The Federal Government is investing $100 billion nationwide to fund better infrastructure over the next 10 years and this funding forms part of the governments continued commitment to keep heavy vehicle drivers safe, improve freight productivity and upgrade our road transport network.”
Federal Member for Maranoa, David Littleproud, said the recently completed projects included extending four culverts and widening 7.25 kilometres of the Carnarvon Highway over several sections.
“Widening key sections of the Carnarvon Highway allows for removal of restrictions on oversize over mass vehicles, which means that there are fewer trucks on the road and products are delivered to their destinations sooner,” Mr Littleproud said.
“The South West Queensland agricultural, livestock and mining sectors can now utilise the highway by providing unlimited and safe load access for heavy vehicles.
“South West Queensland generates more than $19 billion for our state’s economy every year and these upgrades show we’re backing our local producers and freight industry with safer, stronger roads.”
Mayor of Balonne, Samantha O’Toole, said she welcomed the completion of the projects along Carnarvon Highway, which is not only used for freight but also for local residents. “All road users who use the Carnarvon Highway will benefit from these upgrades as safer roads will save lives.
“We are very happy that the Carnarvon Highway has benefitted from these upgrades, which will continue to boost freight movements throughout the region for years to come.”
An announcement regarding the outcome of HVSPP Round 7 is expected to soon be released.