Call to make Kennedy Hwy a priority

Aug 17, 2023

Member for Hill Shane Knuth said the State and Federal Government needed to make the Kennedy Highway, between the Herberton and Tumoulin turn off, a priority.

“This week’s truck rollover is another prime example as to why the government needs to upgrade this road,” Mr Knuth said.

“This is the second major accident, on the same section of road, this year where a truck has rolled causing massive delays.

“Incidents like this have a significant economic effect on local industries and road users.

“It is just fortunate that someone hasn’t lost their life due to an accident on this section.”

Mr Knuth said he had raised the issue of this section of road a number of times and was again calling for action.

Ravenshoe Chamber of Commerce vice president Blake Kidner said another oversized load had rolled over on the exact same corner of the section of the A1 Highway that is deemed a critical road under the Department of Transport and Main Roads and has restrictions for (OSOM) Oversize Overmass Vehicles and b’doubles.

“The road has been closed for several hours on Tuesday, August 15 to lift the truck and trailer out that rolled into the gully on Monday night. The crusher that it was carrying was too heavy to recover at the same time,” Mr Kidner said.

“There was also a prohibited b’double waiting to come through the road closure on Tuesday afternoon when the road reopened.

“The road users are yet again inconvenienced with traffic delays until a larger 250 tonne crane can be mobilised to lift the crusher which requires a single trip permit from main roads.

“This permit system currently has a wait time of about six weeks. The Crusher will stay there until the permit is granted unless it can be fast tracked, where another full road closure will take place to recover the overturned crusher from the gully.

“For the immediate time Transport and Main Roads has a duty of care to warn prohibited vehicles of the road restrictions before it is too late to turn around, this is also a problem on the Gillies Range.

“Signage is not the total answer, as this will continue to happen without redesigning this section of the A1 Kennedy Highway.

“This needs to be an urgent priority for the safety of all road users before we have blood on our hands.”

In February this year a truck was unable to navigate the exact same corner near the Herberton turnoff and rolled down the embankment.