Freight operators will be able to enjoy improved amenities in Walcha after a completion of upgrades to the local truck wash facility.
The upgrade now accommodates B-double trucks, which previously had to travel further to use facilities at Armidale and Tamworth and will ensure cleaner livestock vehicles, leading to improved biosecurity controls throughout the region.
Walcha Council Mayor Eric Noakes said the Walcha Council Truck Wash Facility will be used by many of the 85 trucks which travel through this area each week, transporting more than 1700 tonnes of livestock combined.
“Sheep and cattle producers in Walcha are an important local industry servicing meat processing facilities across the New England region,” Noakes said.
With the Oxley Highway now reopened to traffic after an extended closure due to the severe weather event earlier this year, producers will once again able to send their stock along the essential route linking inland NSW to the Pacific Highway.
“Improving facilities for the local freight network will only strengthen the economy of the Northern Tablelands region with other important local industries including timber, earthmoving, and plant and machinery contractors all benefiting from this improved local truck wash,” Noakes added.
The $1.2 million project was jointly funded by the Australian and New South Wales governments and contributions from the Walcha Council as part of the joint ‘Fixing Country Truck Washes’ program.
Approximately, $598,000 was allocated to the project, with an additional $252,000 funding from the Australian Government’s Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program. Walcha Council contributed $275,000 and a further $2,000 provided by local industry.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Barnaby Joyce said the Australian Government is committed to building and upgrading the infrastructure that businesses need to transport goods quickly and safely.
“The $10 million Fixing Country Truck Washes program continues to deliver improved facilities for agricultural haulage across NSW, playing an important role in reducing the spread of weeds and disease across the state and the nation,” Joyce said.
“We expect the improvements to the facility may encourage freight operators to use Walcha as an interchange point, supporting fatigue management on their journeys.”
More information on the Fixing Country Truck Washes program can be found here.