’Trucking hell’ on town’s roads as uprising brews

Pomona is likely to rise up against Kin Kin quarry trucks "spewing" exhaust fumes through town on their way to the Bruce Hwy as part of their delivery route, according to town activist Stephen Hilditch.

Mr Hilditch said 16 B-double trucks rumbled through the centre of town during one 30 minute period last week.

He believed it would not be long before rallies, similar to when the town successfully protested a plan to close down the local rail crossing pedestrian link, were launched.

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"The thing is they're spewing their garbage over the eateries, the tables and the cars and everything else," Mr Hilditch said.

"They have to wipe the tables down constantly because of the black soot and everything.

"We're not against trucks because we know trucks carry the country, what we're against is the fact that it's coming through the middle of town."

Mr Hilditch said the trucks had alternative routes they could be taking like the sealed Dr Pages Rd along Cootharaba Rd down Junction Rd and eventually down Factory St as a part of a dog leg route.

Mr Hilditch said quarry company Cordwells Concrete needed to put the town's concerns ahead of any transport time schedules.

"This is really annoying now seeing the number of trucks and the danger that it presents," he said.

Noosa quarry trucks are accused of hammering the roads and heading through the middle of Pomona.
Noosa quarry trucks are accused of hammering the roads and heading through the middle of Pomona.

"If they went down McKinnon Dr and did a little dog leg through Tewantin there'd be hell to pay and the same if we put it (the truck route) through Yurol Forest and through Cooroy over the bridge.

"People would be up in arms screaming."

Mr Hilditch said apart from a couple of "cowboys", the truck drivers going through town appeared to be sticking to the speed limits and "doing all the right things".

"They slow down to go around the roundabouts, they have to knock it down a couple of gears then they have to turn it up and that's when all the garbage comes out," he said.

"It's just not on.

"There's just a groundswell of things happening I can see people will be tarring themselves to the roads."

Mr Hilditch agrees with the Kin Kin Community Group which is lobbying authorities for action because of road safety concerns from the major increase in truck movements along Kin Kin Pomona Rd

"Kin Kin Rd is being destroyed with big potholes," he said.

Noosa MP Sandy Bolton is calling for greater funding and urgent works to address the issues.

Ms Bolton said while the quarry had truck movement restrictions in place through an agreement with Noosa Council, that only applied to trucks leaving the quarry.

She said trucks must keep a minimum five-minute gap between trucks loading and leaving with no movements before 6am.

"But the agreement does not cover trucks arriving at the quarry before that time to load up," she said.

"Suddenly the volume of truck traffic has gone up.

"The road in parts is disintegrating rapidly."

Ms Bolton said she had arranged for a road inspector to visit the sites impacted, with remedial works undertaken immediately.

"I had already applied for new sheeting for sections - but the area (affected) has now expanded," she said.

"We must make the road safe and serviceable.

Quarry trucks on the move from Kin Kin.
Quarry trucks on the move from Kin Kin.

"There are lots of new homes in that area, as well as walkers, cyclists and horse riders.

"This is also part of the Noosa Country Drive, a vital link to developing the local economy."

Ms Bolton said with the loss of international and interstate travellers, as well jobs in many areas, it was imperative Noosa attracted regional visitors to help survive beyond the impacts of COVID-19.

"Dangerous roads are not part of that," Ms Bolton said.

She has also told Main Roads the road fix was no longer a case of carrying out patch-jobs, but required a large solution.

"The safety of our families and visitors, as well as the emotional and economic wellbeing of these communities, depend on this," Ms Bolton said.

"And driver behaviour is an issue, requiring greater police presence.

She said what was once an open country road which was an enjoyable experience for motorists was "now more dangerous than before".

"We have to make sure the road surface can stand the traffic burden, and that drivers are doing the right thing," Ms Bolton said.

"We have had no fatalities - and as I said to residents at a community meeting, I will not have one on my watch.

"This is a priority issue for me now, and in the next term of government."

Cordwells has already signalled its intention to work in with police, local authorities and the community to overcome the concerns.


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