The Road Ahead : August 1st 2012
RACQ HELP VISIT US ON THE WEB RACQ/ RACQI racq.com free2go free2go.com.au The Road Ahead roadahead.com.au Email email@example.com facebook.com/racqofficial twitter.com/racqofficial ROADSIDE HELP (24 HRS) 13 1111 TTY (impaired hearing) 3248 2074 HELP LINE (24 HRS) 13 1905 Medical, home, accident emergency advice. Motoring legal advice. MEMBERSHIP (24 HRS) 13 1905 Join, pay by phone, enquiries. INSURANCE (24 HRS) 13 1905 Enquiries, sales, alterations & payments RACQ Insurance claims 13 7202 OTHER RACQ SERVICES Child safety restraints Advice/sales 3872 8926 Mail order 1800 816 523 Driver education 3361 2382 (Rec. driving schools) 1800 680 039 RACQ Loans RACQ car & personal loans 1300 361 316 Technical advice 3666 9148 Members in country areas 1800 623 456 Community & Education 3872 8674 Road safety education Travel services Accom. bookings (Aust.) 1800 629 501 Road conditions (recorded) 1300 130 595 (24 hrs, or see website) Travel agency bookings 1300 888 449 Vehicle storage 3272 5982 Vehicle inspections 13 1905 OFFICES Head Office 13 1905 P.O. Box 4, Springwood, Qld 4127 Branch/retail offices See 'RACQ' in the phone directory or racq.com. RACQ BOARD Club Patron Penelope Wensley, AC, Governor of Queensland President & Chairman Geoff Leddy Vice Pres. & Dep. Chairman Nigel Alexander Directors Fay Barker, Tony Gambling, Dennis Howe, Elizabeth Jameson, Stephen Maitland, Bronwyn Morris, Karl Morris, Richard Pietsch Group CEO Ian Gillespie WWW.ROADAHEAD.COM.AU THE ROAD AHEAD AUG/SEP 2012 6 COMMUNITY VIEWPOINT GEOFF LEDDY, RACQ PRESIDENT IN JUNE THIS year, I represented the RACQ's 1.2 million members at the first meeting of the Queensland Government's Bruce Highway Crisis Management Group. It was timely that, just days before, a new report named five sections of the Bruce Highway among the top 15 most dangerous national highway links Australia-wide. The dominance of the Bruce Highway on the Australian Road Assessment Program's (AusRAP) updated list of Persistently High Risk Roads across Australia, based on crash statistics, came as no surprise. Earlier findings by AusRAP identified the Bruce Highway as the riskiest in Queensland and the latest report confirmed our suspicions that it was also one of the riskiest in Australia. The links identified were: • Childers to Miriam Vale • Miriam Vale to Rockhampton • Sarina to Mackay • Proserpine to Ayr • Innisfail to Cairns. Surprisingly, the Cooroy to Curra section was not on the list. Road safety upgrades since 2005, including the notoriously dangerous section at Federal, combined with a lowering of the speed limit to 90 km/h in late 2008 and a high police presence, appear to have reduced crash rates on this part of the highway. With the opening of the 12 km duplicated section B expected by the end of this year, further relief is in sight, although there are several more sections still to be upgraded. These latest AusRAP findings certainly support the push for more government funding for priority projects on the Bruce, which accounts for one in six deaths on Australia's national highways. Most of the first meeting of the ANOTHER UNWANTED ACCOLADE FOR BRUCE HWY Crisis Management Group was devoted to briefing the group about the deficiencies of the highway, what needed to be done to fix it, how much it would cost, and where the funding would come from. Traditionally, funding for national highways has been the responsibility of the Federal Government, with it providing 80 percent and the State providing 20. Based on this formula and the Newman Government's commitment to provide an additional $100 million every year (over the $100 million already allocated) for the next 10 years, the Federal Government could be expected to contribute $800 million annually for the same period. This makes a total of $10 billion, which sounds huge -- but every cent of it will be needed to fix the inherent issues with the state's key highway. For example, the Yeppen flood plain south of Rockhampton, which was closed for 13 days during the 2011 floods, will account for $700 million, and the Herbert River flood plain north of Townsville another $1 billion. Since 2009, the Bruce Highway has been closed 530 times because of flooding, so clearly this work is essential. There's no nice way of saying it: Queensland's major freight route, the Bruce Highway, is an embarrassment. It floods every time we have a normal wet season and the crash statistics are among the worst in Australia.
June July 2012