6 March 2020
Having spent more than four years lobbying the State Government, Member for Frome Geoff Brock MP is pleased to support the announcement of funding to improve the dangerous Blyth to Halbury Road (Blyth Plains Road).
Mr Brock has lobbied for years to bring the State Government of the day’s attention to the condition of the road, which is used by grain and hay trucks, school buses and other road users, and last week, in Parliament, he received a commitment from Transport and Infrastructure Minster Stephan Knoll that work will commence in April.
“Next month, we are going to get on and seal that road, seal the shoulders on that road, to save the 600 vehicles a day that drive over that road, to help them stay alive using the Blyth Plains Road $3.5 million as part of the safety package under our Rural Roads Program to help improve road safety on that dangerous stretch of road,” Mr Knoll said in Parliament last week.
“It has taken many years to get this great result and I am grateful to Minister Knoll for taking the time to experience the safety issues for himself when he attended a site visit in June 2019 and saw firsthand the shocking narrow space between two passing heavy vehicles,” Mr Brock said.
The 12km of road requires safety barriers and shoulder widening to make it safer for all road users.
“I am pleased the State Government has made a decision to tackle the road improvements sooner, rather than later.
“I have been concerned at a five-10-year time frame, which had been previously given to me by the Department, as there has been a huge potential for tragedy along this road.
“I was advised by the Minister in 2018 that this dangerous section of road was not currently scheduled for shoulder sealing works, but was considered a medium term priority for works within the next five to 10 years,” Mr Brock said.
“I wrote to Minister Knoll, raising the matter again in early 2019, illustrating the narrow passing clearance between trucks on that section of the road ,which left no safe distance between them, and was again told the road was not scheduled for shoulder sealing works.
“And again, I wrote back saying the time frame given of five-10 years was unacceptable.”
Mr Brock said he was pleased at the positive outcome and that the road surface would now be given the attention it deserved in order to preserve the safety of all road users and especially the constituents of the Frome electorate.