Statement calling for upgrades to the Bruce Highway through Wide Bay – House of Representatives
After the spate of horror fatalities on the Bruce Highway between Gympie and Maryborough, headlines from my local newspapers The Gympie Times and Fraser Coast Chronicle have called out: ‘Queensland’s highway of hell,’ ‘Road deaths must stop,’ ‘Stop ignoring dozens of road deaths,’ and ‘We need more lanes’.
The reality is that safer roads save lives. We only need to look at the difference that the half-finished Cooroy-to-Curra upgrade has made. The divided four-lane highway protects motorists from head-on collisions. Once the deadliest section of highway, the half-finished upgrade has so far delivered a fatality-free section of new road. But the job is only half done.
With the RACQ and the Australian Automobile Association, I am continuing to fight for more construction funding to finish section D, which is the largest section of the project.
Our push for decentralisation needs to be matched with infrastructure that accommodates growth. We cannot leave projects half done. The section D project brings Maryborough, Bundaberg and Gladstone closer to Brisbane. At the same time, we need to invest in projects to increase safety and build capacity between Gympie and Maryborough.
Next Wednesday I am leading a delegation of Wide Bay mayors to meet with Minister Chester. We are making a strong case for section D. The government must listen to us.