Pollies agree road upgrade needed after crash tragedy
AS THE community continues to real from Sunday's tragic car accident that took the life of nine year-old Zara Pakleppa, the calls for upgrading the Yeppoon to Rockhampton stretch have intensified.
Yesterday, The Morning Bulletin reported a $190million dollar upgrade to the corridor between Yeppoon and Mount Isa from the Federal Government under the Roads of Strategic Importance Program.
Following yesterday's publication, Capricornia MP Michelle Landry told media that she was lobbying heads of government, including the Deputy Prime Minister to attract more of the funding to the dangerous stretch.
"The works will come down to advise from the main roads department, but I have been asked about the Yeppoon to Rockhampton stretch," she said.
"I'd love to see the whole Yeppoon to Rockhampton stretch four lanes, but I'm not quite sure on what the cost factor of that would be.
"We know there are dangerous areas there and we saw a tragedy there on the Sunday - There needs to be some major work done there ASAP."
"I've spoken to Michael McCormick yesterday abut the importance of this and he agreed."
It remains unknown exactly, where on the 1,373 kilometre stretch, would receive the funding or whether extra funding would be allocated to the stretch.
This signifies attempts from both sides of the political divide to have the stretch upgraded.
Labor doubled down on their commitments to duplicate the stretch of road earlier this year when Opposition Leader Bill Shorten visited.
They estimate the duplication of the stretch would cost $47.5million.
"We want to put dual lane-ways between the Rockhampton and Yeppoon (stage one) - that's $47.5million," Mr Shorten said.
At the same town hall meeting, Labor candidate for Capricornia, Russell Robertson, expressed his concerns regarding the stretch.
"There have been at least 20 fatalities on the Yeppoon-Rockhampton road in the last 20 years," Mr Robertson said.
"By duplicating the Rockhampton-Yeppoon road, we will improve road safety and create 150 local jobs."
Calls for action have also been received from Rockhampton Regional Council mayor Margaret Strelow and Livingston Shire Council mayor Bill Ludwig.