Roads Agriculture | December 06, 2016

Labor targets harvest for vehicle road blitz

The Nationals Member for Lowan, Emma Kealy MP says the Andrews Labor Government's 'Operation Big Wheels' has unfairly targeted farmers and harvest contractors to raise revenue for the Government.

“For almost two weeks our local Warracknabeal farmers and harvest contractors have been targeted by a vehicle road blitz, which has now moved into the Murtoa area,” Ms Kealy said.

“Local farmers are aware of increased police and VicRoads presence on our roads each harvest season, however this year they are making reports of feeling targeted by an ‘over the top’ vehicle road blitz called Operation Big Wheels.

“We know that it is essential that harvest trucks and heavy vehicles are road worthy and maintained for the safety of all road users, however Labor's targeted blitz is over the top.

“I have received an overwhelming number of complaints from local people who feel they are being unfairly targeted with reports that drivers have been pulled over four times for the same vehicle check process,” she said.

Drivers have received defect notices for small tears in seats and chipped windscreens with vehicles ordered off the road until repairs are made, putting enormous pressure on local farmers trying to work through the busy harvest season. 

“The Andrews Labor Government have put in place an over the top vehicle road blitz as a revenue raising exercise, hitting local food producers to raise money for Labor to spend in Melbourne,” Ms Kealy said.

"It is ridiculous that the Andrews Labor Government is seeking to raise revenue from hardworking farmers and harvest contractors after two years of drought, when a lot of the more serious vehicle damage detected by police has been caused by the terrible condition of our roads.

"Our local police are just following orders by the Andrews Labor Government and are doing their best to support the local community. It is Daniel Andrews that needs to pull his head in and realise that targeting country people about road worthy vehicles is just unfair when he won't provide car-worthy roads,” she said.

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