Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Will $5.2M Upgrade Save Lives on Bruce?

Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Will $5.2M Upgrade Save Lives on Bruce?

Article excerpt

Byline: Geoff Egan Geoff.Egan@newsregionalmedia.com.au

ELEVEN people have been killed in 15 years at one of Central Queensland's deadliest blackspots - but the Queensland Government hopes a $5.2 million upgrade of the Bruce Hwy at Marlborough will save lives.

An analysis of 15 years of government crash data has revealed 11 people have been killed in nine crashes on the highway on either side of the Marlborough turnoff. Seven of those deaths occurred in crashes involving trucks.

The tragic history of our region's deadliest highway is revealed as police plead with drivers to take care on Queensland roads over the Easter break.

Three people were killed in two crashes on the stretch in 2015 alone.

In August 2015, a 50-year-old motorcyclist was killed when he swerved to avoid a kangaroo and collided with a vehicle travelling south.

In October 2015, a 19-year-old German backpacker driving a station wagon and a 40-year-old South Australian truck driver were killed when their vehicles collided just south of Marlborough.

A Department of Transport and Main Roads spokeswoman said a new truck driver rest area would be built along with three intersection upgrades that would be completed later this year.

"We are delivering a $5.2 million project as part of the Bruce Hwy Safety Package north of Rockhampton to upgrade three intersections and construct a new heavy vehicle rest area," she said.

"The works to upgrade the Bruce Hwy intersections at Atkinsons Rd, Raspberry Creek Rd and Kooltandra Rd and construction of the rest area began in November 2016 and are expected to be completed and open to traffic by mid-year."

The spokeswoman said new widened centrelines on the Bruce Hwy had nearly halved the death toll.

Crash records also show major inter-city highways are some of deadliest roads in Queensland.

Four in 10 Rockhampton road deaths between 2001 and 2016 occurred on either the Bruce or Captain Cook highways. …

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