Roads | November 28, 2017

Maroona Glenthompson Road, Willaura

Victorian Parliament - 28 November 2017 - Ms KEALY - I wish to raise an adjournment matter for the Minister for Roads and Road Safety. Maroona‑Glenthompson Road is currently being used by a higher than usual number of trucks due to the closure of the alternate route at Rossbridge. Despite having more than a year to make sure Maroona‑Glenthompson Road was in suitable condition to handle truck traffic, the road is just too narrow, with truck mirrors almost touching when passing vehicles travel in the opposite direction, and poor maintenance of the road has resulted in numerous potholes and significant drop‑offs on the shoulders. The road is simply not safe for local residents or other users of the road.

Tragically my concerns regarding the safety of our country roads were realised last week when a truck driver sadly lost his life on Maroona‑Glenthompson Road last Thursday. People attending the scene of the accident have told me it appears the truck went off the road into a 6‑inch drop‑off at the shoulder, which led to the driver losing control of the vehicle and, tragically, losing his life while just doing his job. I extend my sincere and heartfelt condolences to his family.

To highlight the issues with this road, another truck accident occurred this morning on this same road. Again it appears the driver travelled around the bend and hit a hole, causing the truck to roll. Fortunately in this instance the driver has survived, and I would like to acknowledge the Country Fire Authority volunteers from the Willaura brigade who attended both accidents.

Maroona‑Glenthompson Road, like many roads in the Lowan electorate, is simply not at a standard to handle this level of truck traffic. It is simply not good enough that we have roads that have been so poorly maintained that people are putting their lives at risk when they are just doing the jobs they love, taking the kids to school or going to footy or netball training. Labor’s cuts to the VicRoads asset management budget over the past three years and their scrapping of The Nationals’ country roads and bridges program are taking their toll.

We do not need reduced speed limits on our country roads; we need roads that are safe for our people to use. I therefore ask the minister to take urgent and immediate action to review the suitability of our country roads to handle the trucks and other traffic they carry and to provide VicRoads with the budget that allows them to do their job and to fix up country roads to save country lives.

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