News

Death trap bridge could kill the unwary

Woolooga residents standing on the Running Creek bridge wanting an upgrade are Phil Stanford, Steve Turner, Sean Barrett, Nevile and Joy Turner and Sharon Turner.
Woolooga residents standing on the Running Creek bridge wanting an upgrade are Phil Stanford, Steve Turner, Sean Barrett, Nevile and Joy Turner and Sharon Turner. Renee Albrecht

THERE seems to be one constant factor in single-vehicle accidents in Woolooga. It's Running Creek Bridge.

The ground level wooden bridge, which is met either side by two serious bends and gravely road, has been the scene of four car accidents in the past 12 months.

And Woolooga residents are calling for funding to change the dangerous crossing.

"None of us want to be the first person to come across a fatal," cattle farmer Phil Stanford points out.

The group of Woolooga residents fear if something is not done soon, the problem will worsen.

Residents say the bridge, on Brooweena Woolooga Rd, has a combination of factors that make it highly dangerous.

Sharp bends approaching the bridge, coupled with loose gravel built up on the dirt on its approaches mean unwary drivers have a higher than normal chance of losing control over the bridge or down the embankments, residents say.

The bridge, which runs about 45 metres long, drops about four metres into water of an unknown depth.

"It's deep enough to submerge a car and drown you if you go off the edge," Mr Stanford said, peering over the edge.

Woolooga resident Sharon Turner said the problem is made worse by unknowing travellers being led across the bridge by their GPS navigators.

"The traffic has increased because we get tourists and people from the city whose GPSs have sends them on the shortest route," she said.

The road is used as a quicker path for people travelling between the South Burnett and Gympie.

"It's a dangerous spot, no ifs or buts," Sharon's husband Steve said.

In 1978, Mr Turner's brother was driving when his car went over the bridge. He said his grandfather's back was broken in the accident, and only a few months ago his father ran off the side of the bridge.

It seems every Woolooga local has a story about an accident on the bridge, including the recent accident where a woman was trapped in her car that was suspended from the bridge by the motorbike trailer it was pulling.

An attempt to address the problem long ago got as far as funding which resulted in surveying of a straightened road in readiness for a new bridge upstream.

"There's been money to fix this up for years but changes to government mean the money has been spent elsewhere," Mrs Turner said.

The question is - has the project been put on the back burner, or has it been put on the scrap heap?

The bridge is under the jurisdiction of the Department of Main Roads and Transport.

Residents thought funding from the Federal Government's Bridges Renewal Program may be a way to secure funding for a change to the crossing.

But probing on the issue found while the Commonwealth Government does supply funding to upgrade existing rural bridges, it would not cover new bridges or approaches.

And this is the big fix needed, according to locals.

"It needs to be fixed before it is too late," Mrs Turner said.

The Gympie Times did not hear back from Minister for Main Roads, Mark Bailey on the subject before close of business.

Gympie Times

Topics:  woolooga



How to survive a bushfire in your car

IT SOUNDS like a nightmare, but it can happen.

Eight reasons to join the RFS

SPREAD across 93% of Queensland, the Rural Fire Service has about 36,000 volunteers. And you could be one of them.

What if my insurer gives me grief?

CLAIMING your insurance cover after a natural disaster can go one of two ways. It can be a breeze, or like pulling teeth.

He fought off death three times in one week

THE BLINK OF AN EYE: Gympie son Scott Hoare in his hospital bed with girlfriend Angie by his side.

Gympie son Scott Hoare paralysed in tragic surf accident

MP's best wishes for 'man of integrity'

NO QUESTION: Gympie MP Tony Perrett has congratulated former Nations leader and recent political retiree, Lawrence Springborg, on a career marked by "stand out integrity.”

Perrett congratulates retired colleague on "stand out integrity”

Are agents undervaluing Gympie properties?

Letter writer questions whether Gympie properties are being under valued.

Letter writer questions values put on Gympie properties

Local Partners

End-of-year break-up for OWN

GUNABUL Homestead was the place to be for 62 members of the Older Women's Network on December 1.


Your definitive Gympie guide to school holiday fun

HANDS ON: Get the chance to create your own clay animals at the Gympie Regional Gallery.

Check out the amazing things to do over the school holidays.

GARAGE SALES: Where to grab a bargain this weekend

Several sales are being held in Rockhampton on Saturday as part of the national Garage Sale Trail.

Take a look at these treasure troves

Kernaghan's a 'boy from the bush' with a timeless quality

Country music singer Lee Kernaghan.

Lee Kernaghan is celebrating the 25th year of his breakthrough song.

Jennifer Lawrence apologises to the people of Hawaii

Jennifer Lawrence sorry for 'offensive' story

Cruz Beckham's single a 'one-off'

He is not planning to launch a full-time music career yet.

Louis Tomlinson's mother dies aged 42

Louis Tomlinson's mother has died.

Respect and Christmas joy

RESPECT: Gympie's Mary-Helen Buchan (right) performing at the Memorial Park Rotunda with fellow James Nash Vocal group singers Hadassah Covert, Red Smith, Jonas White and Naomi Kassulske.

Gympie singer takes the big Christmas message to Brisbane

Star Wars spin off gets green light grom Lucas

Riz Ahmed, Diego Luna, Felicity Jones, Jiang Wen and Donnie Yen star in the movie Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

Lucas said to have enjoyed the latest Star Wars spin-off

BOOK REVIEW: The Mask of Command

This narrative from Anicent Rome has it all

The apple and the worm

Gympie journalist Arthur Gorrie.

Progress leaps along, so let's look first

Essential to get new Maroochydore CBD fundamentals right

LOOKING AHEAD: The central business district at Maroochydore is planned to be the heart of the Sunshine Coast.

SunCentral reports good progress on 53ha Sunshine Coast city heart

'Crucial' farm land eyed by defence department

Lawson Geddes moving the Brangus cattle to higher ground - which is the land the Defence Department is interested taking for the Shoalwater Bay expansion.

"You can't have one without the other.”

Former Shark Show for sale for $1.3 million

Vic Hislop at the old Shark Show.

TALK about a jaws-dropping real estate opportunity.

There's a whole lot of luxury in this home

The Endeavour Foundation's latest prize home in Mountain Creek.

WHEN it comes to desirable homes, it's hard to go past a prize home.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!