Rest areas dont need toilets and drinking water: QLD

By: Jason Whittaker

The Queensland Government has neglected to install toilets and drinking water at eight new rest areas because they were considered

The Queensland Government has neglected to install toilets and drinking water at eight new rest areas because they were considered unnecessary.

A spokesperson for Main Roads Minister Warren Pitt says the areas along the Carnarvon Highway were individually evaluated to determine what facilities they should receive based on how often they would be used and how much it would cost to maintain them

According to a spokesperson for Pitt, toilets demanded too much maintenance and water supply, which could not be justified for rest areas in remote areas.

And while Pitt claims the new areas include fresh rainwater, along with benches, chairs, shelters and bins, the spokesperson tells Owner/Driver the water can only be used for washing hands or utensils.

"The decision to not include restrooms at the eight sites was based on an assessment that evaluated their remoteness in terms of expected usage, maintenance and water supply," the spokesperson says.

The eight rest areas on the hgihway are north of St George and north and south of Roma and Surat.

Pitt says the new and improved stops will go a long way to reducing driver fatigue. He says truck drivers will be able to pull over safely and fill out their logbooks before continuing their journey.

"Main Roads is working towards improving and installing more of these facilities for heavy vehicles where possible, as part of our long-term strategy to address heavy vehicle driver fatigue," he says.

According to a spokesperson, the stops can hold four road train vehicles measuring 36 metres in length.

The areas are designed to operate in all weather conditions, with the spokesperson saying they have been bitumen sealed.

The areas are spaced about 40km apart and meet the National Guidelines for the Provision of Rest Area Facilities, the spokesperson says.

The rest stops were funded as part of the Government’s Safer Roads Sooner program, which draws revenue from speeding and red light camera fines.

The spokesperson says no more stops are scheduled to be built on the Carnarvon Highway, which is a key north-south freight route stretching 240km.

The spokesperson says six more rest stops will be built before new fatigue management laws are introduced on September 29, which will be on the Rockhampton-Duaringa Highway of the Capricorn Highway.

However, this rest stop will not include any facilities, with the spokesperson saying it is "purely an area for vehicles to pull off the highway and rest".

Furthermore, only "some of these stopping places will be large enough to accomodate trucks," the spokesperson says.

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