Gympie region’s most dangerous country roads
FEDERAL and State-controlled roads often dominate most dangerous lists owing to their high traffic volumes, but Gympie Regional Council has its own share of problem spots – and Eel Creek Rd is the worst.
State Government data reveals from January 2001-December 2018, one of the main arterials leading into and out of Gympie from the Southside was the site of 43 crashes, including four fatals in 2003, 2009, 2013 and 2018.
Another 12 required a trip to the hospital, and more than two-thirds of the crashes involved one vehicle.
Kandanga-Imbil Rd claimed the spot as the council’s second-most dangerous with 37 crashes (and one fatality).
Duke St in the heart of the city was the third-worst stretch, with Sandy Creek Rd and its 32 crashes coming in as the fourth most dangerous local road.
The list was rounded out by a tie for fifth spot between Monkland St and Old Maryborough Rd, which each recorded 30 crashes in the period.
Mayor Glen Hartwig said the council was aware of some lingering issues.
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“We know our road network isn’t at the level it should been” Mr Hartwig said.
“We’re working, as we are in all our core services, on getting back to where we should be, not only financially but also from a road user and resident perspective,” he said.
The roads have not been entirely neglected, though.
In the past two years the council has installed safety upgrades at the Mary’s Creek Rd intersection, and fixed the Coppermine Creek Timber bridge at the cost of $280,000.
Another $695,000 is being spent this year to widen the deadly curve near the Langshaw Hall and improve the road surface, and a further $350,000 is being spent on widening the stretch of Eel Creek Road between Lawson and Regan roads.
Council communications manager Sharna Rowley said further funding applications have been made.
At Kandanga-Imbil Rd, $1000 has been spent to lower the speed limit between Ray Myers Rd and Imbil, and at Duke St a $70,000 footpath was installed and $1000 more spent on line marking changes at the Channon St intersection.
Sandy Creek Rd was given $14,000 in upgraded storm water culverts, and another $2000 in curve warning and flood warning signs near the North Deep Creek Rd.
There is $100,000 earmarked to widen the road near Kenins Rd this year.
The council is seeking more funding to improve the roads.
“Residents deserve decent roads and we’re implementing changes to how we manage our road network to get back industry standards,” Mr Hartwig said.
“This financial year, we’ve budgeted over $26 million which is allocated for areas such as road maintenance, bridges and resealing, but it will take time.”