Desperate Farmers Plan DIY Road Repair; Crops Will ,Cyrot in Ground' If Trucks Can't Access Farms

Article excerpt

Byline: MELANIE MAESEELE melanie.maeseele@qt.com.au

LOCKYER Valley farmers fear they could be forced to rebuild a devastated road themselves in order to save their harvest and their livelihoods.

The road connecting Gatton with the communities of Mt Sylvia, Junction View, West Haldon and Black Duck was washed away on December 27.

Heavy rains last year ruined the area's watermelon crop and farmers are saying they cannot afford to let another crop rot in the ground.

Mt Sylvia Fresh Vegetables owners Julia and Brian Crust said: C[pounds sterling]This is our business, our income and we have to get this produce out to the supermarkets, otherwise everyone loses out.

C[pounds sterling]We aren't sure how we are going to get the produce out because no vehicle, unless it's a small four-wheel-drive, can get out here, let alone a refrigerated produce truck.

C[pounds sterling]We still have to get our fuel, rubbish, fertiliser, gas and other service vehicles in yet, and we don't know how we are going to do that either.C[yen]

Mrs Crust said several of the farmers in the affected region have contacted Main Roads since the December 27 rains caused initial damage and again following the downpour on January 10, but nothing had been done. …