Ipswich region's highway to hell
THE Ipswich section of the Cunningham Highway is a hellish road when it comes to accidents in our region.
With 1000 smashes between 2001 and 2013, the major arterial is the Ipswich area's number one crash zone. An analysis of Queensland Government accident data shows there were 10, 227 crashes in the Ipswich City Council area over the 13 years.
Rounding out the top four crash zones are the Cunningham Hwy on 911 accidents; the Warrego Hwy on 596; Ipswich-Warrego Hwy Connection with 313; and the Ipswich Mwy on 299.
Road conditions play a major part in the severity of crashes and authorities are committing millions of dollars to fix problems.
The Queensland Government will spend $4,704,659 across the Main Roads metropolitan region - which covers Ipswich and Brisbane - under the three-year Safer Roads Sooner program.
The Federal Government has set aside $1.15 million to improve safety along a 900m section of the Cunningham Hwy at New Chum, which is notorious for single-vehicle crashes.
Ipswich City Council is spending $37.6 million on roads this financial year.
This includes $1.8 million on road repairs; $4 million on the Redbank Plains Rd upgrade; and $6.5 million for the stage two construction of the Collingwood Dr link between Collingwood Park and Redbank Plains Rd.
Cr Cheryl Bromage said council was "proactive" about road safety.
"Council takes both a proactive and reactive approach to improving safety for all road users," Cr Bromage said.
"Crashes in the Ipswich local government area occur on both state-controlled roads such as motorways, highways and major arterial roads and local government roads.
"While Ipswich City Council is only responsible for the local roads, it works very closely with the State and Federal governments to ensure a safe and integrated approach to the management of the entire transport network.
"In addition, officers from the council, the State Government and Queensland Police regularly meet to consider transport and traffic issues within the LGA with road safety a high priority."
RACQ senior road safety advisor Joel Tucker said improving roads could mean the difference between life and death for some crash victims.
"Driver behaviour is up to the individual and road authorities do not have direct control of this.
"All the motoring clubs are saying 'Get your roads in order'.
"If you build a good road today, it will be there tomorrow and it's going to be there 20 or 30 years before it needs too much work."
A representative for the state's Main Roads Minister, Mark Bailey, said $350m would be spent on safety improvements along major arterials by 2020.
"The Queensland Government remains committed to working with the Federal Government in delivering $350 million in jointly funded safety improvements on the Bruce Hwy, between Brisbane and Cairns and $40 million on the Warrego Highway, between Toowoomba and Miles over the next five years," the representative said.