Truckies are not impressed as Ampol Foodary Southbound on the M1 at Wyong is closing its truck stop facilities for seven weeks.
There will be no showers or toilets available for use by truckies at the stop from now until December 10, according to a sign posted on the entrance to the facilities.
The sign reads: “From Monday the 23rd of October until the 10th of December 2023 the truck stop amenities will be unavailable for use due to works being done. Apologies for any inconvenience.”
Truck driver Jeff Cook, who drives the M1 multiple times a day, said the closure is very frustrating.
“I went in for a shower the other day and the sign was there,” he said.
“There was no warning or anything, the sign was just up.”
Cook said that when the facilities were closed on northbound side of the highway, they had at least provided portable toilets.
“They had portable toilets on the other side of the M1, but no showers.
“Now there are no showers southbound between Sydney and Newcastle, so I have nowhere to go.
“There are one or two places with toilets that you can use but they don’t have ample parking for trucks – and if they do, most of the parking is taken up by caravans and what have you.”
When contacted for comment, a spokesperson for Ampol Foodary Southbound said: “We can’t give you any information about what’s happening with the facilities here at the moment.”
Cook claims that facilities for truckies are often not a priority, no matter where you are in Australia.
“There is a lack of respect for people in the transport industry,” he said.
“Often showers are not cleaned, they are mouldy or dirty or falling apart. And that’s not just on the M1, there are plenty of places that are like that.”
He also voiced his frustration over members of the public using lounge areas that are intended for truckies.
“I can’t count the number of times I have gone into a truck stop, hoping to sit in the lounge and watch some TV.
“The next thing you know, 200 tourists walk in and sit in the lounge.
“Some people, if you go up to them and tell them it’s for truckies only, will move. But others say it’s school holidays and it’s busy and they need to sit there.
“It’s a truckies’ lounge, it’s for truck drivers only, and they don’t seem to understand what is going on. This happens everywhere, from Brisbane to Melbourne.
“I reckon the only way to stop it is to put a PIN code on the door so the public can’t go in there.”