Flinders Highway widening to head off 'head-on' crashes

Media Release

DC397/2017

05 December 2017

Joint release with:

Matthew Canavan

Minister for Northern Australia

  • Tenders called to deliver safety works between Townsville and Torrens Creek
  • The Australian Government has committed $13.6 million to the project
  • Part of the Government's commitment to upgrade high-priority northern Australian roads

Tenders are being called to deliver a $17 million lane-widening project designed to reduce the risk of head-on and run-off crashes on the Flinders Highway between Townsville and Torrens Creek.

Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said the Australian Government had committed up to $13.6 million under the $600 million Northern Australia Roads Program (NARP) to widen, strengthen and smooth-out the road surface along approximately 8 kilometres of the Flinders Highway.

“We are continuing to improve roads across northern Australia to strengthen connections between communities and make sure people driving through this part of the country can do so as safely as possible,” Mr Chester said.

“The works which are being done under this package will deliver more space between opposing lanes of traffic, vastly reducing the risk of head on crashes and creating a safer and more efficient Flinders Highway between Townsville and Torrens Creek.”

Federal Minister for Northern Australia Matthew Canavan said the project would also underpin the region's industries, with the Flinders Highway forming part of the road network that served the north-west and north-east mineral provinces and carried freight to the Port of Townsville.

“This is one of the major northern Australian freight routes, and these upgrades will ensure this section is capable of supporting larger vehicles carrying heavier loads,” Senator Canavan said.

“We're investing in agriculture and industry in Northern Australia, and that will mean more products have to get to market. It's critical both the Australian and Queensland Governments support the region's ability to take advantage of new economic opportunities.”

Construction on the Flinders Highway project is expected to begin in early 2018, with an expected completion date of mid-2019.

The Australian Government and Queensland Government have committed up to $13.6 million and $3.4 million to the project, respectively.