Apr 9, 2013

Waldron’s Swamp rest area upgrade begins

Truck drivers who regularly use the Princes Highway will soon have another safe, modern place to pull over and take a break or catch up on their sleep following the start of work on the extensive upgrade of the Waldron’s Swamp rest area, just north of Moruya.

Federal Infrastructure and Transport Minister Anthony Albanese said the project will expand the existing rest area – located on the southbound side of the Highway – so that it’s able to accommodate four trucks of up to 19 metres in length at any one time.

“The funding for this upgrade is coming from our Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Program, the first ever Federal initiative dedicated to addressing the unacceptable lack of safe, modern roadside facilities along the nation’s highways,” said Mr Albanese.

“In total we’re delivering 83 new and refurbished rest stops across NSW, including four on the Princes Highway, complementing our record investment in upgrading key sections of the State’s road network.

“By giving truck drivers more opportunities to get the respite they need, the investment we are making in new and better rest stops will over time make our roads safer for everyone.”

NSW Roads and Ports Minister Duncan Gay said the upgrade, which will take six months to complete, follows the extensive community consultations carried out in July of last year.

“The site was identified in consultation with the trucking industry and in accordance with national guidelines requiring major rest areas to be located within a maximum of 120 kilometres on key rural freight routes,” said Mr Gay.

“Driver behaviour, noise and traffic conditions are being monitored at other heavy vehicle rest areas to help determine whether a fifth rest area should be built along the Highway at the Christopher’s Road intersection.

“Last year in this State, 73 people lost their lives in crashes involving heavy vehicles, with fatigue a factor in many of them.  We must continue to do all we can to prevent similar tragedies in the future – and without a doubt providing new and upgraded rest stops is part of the answer.”