Roadworks, Transport Industry News

Works begin on Great Northern Highway overtaking lanes

Great Northern Highway

The Western Australian government is commencing works to construct 11 new overtaking lanes on the Great Northern Highway between Newman and Port Hedland.

Part of a $50 million package of works on the state’s roads, the lanes are included under the federal government’s Great Northern Highway corridor project.

The WA government says it aims to boost the Pilbara’s region mining sector as well as improve road safety for heavy vehicle drivers travelling along the highway.

More than 60 per cent of traffic travelling between Newman and Port Hedland is heavy vehicles, and state transport minister Rita Saffioti says this will only see improvements to the freight network.

“Our government is focused on ensuring the movement of freight across our state, particularly in the North West, is as safe and efficient as possible,” she says.

“We have a significant number of heavy vehicles moving on the Great Northern Highway and the installation of overtaking lanes in strategic locations will reduce travel times, improve efficiency, and enhance safety by ensuring drivers don’t take unnecessary risks.

“We remain committed to improving regional road safety and the wider state road network for both heavy vehicle operators and local commuters.”

The new lanes will be delivered in two stages. The first stage will see five new overtaking lines constructed between Newman and Auski, including three southbound overtaking lanes and two northbound overtaking lanes.

In the second stage, six further overtaking lanes will be built between Auski and Port Hedland, with contracts still to be awarded for the project. The WA government says it hopes they will be chosen by the middle of the year.

“It’s wonderful that work is underway on 11 new overtaking lanes on the Great Northern Highway between Newman and Port Hedland,” says senator Glenn Sterle.

“These overtaking lanes will improve road safety by providing and encouraging safe overtaking opportunities, reducing driver frustration from drivers not being able to overtake slower-moving vehicles.

“Residents, drivers and importantly our hard-working truckies in Western Australia’s north will greatly benefit for years to come from this work being funded by the federal and Western Australian governments.

“As someone who still drives trucks along this route, I know this work is going to make a great difference for our truckies.”

The project will also deliver important tourism benefits, while giving greater access to Aboriginal communities. The WA government expects works to be completed by mid-2025.

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