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Safety cash splash pledge on WA rural roads

State government flags upgrades and repairs for Wheatbelt routes


A range of rural Western Australian roads will get attention through the state’s Black Spot and Safer Roads programs this financial year, premier Mark McGowan says.

The $25 million Black Spot Program is a joint state-local government initiative, with the state providing $20 million and local governments the remaining $5 million.

The program targets improvements to roads with a proven crash history and cost-effective treatments. Wheatbelt roads receiving funding in 2018-19 include:

  • $1.1 million for the Bakers Hill Improvement Project – upgrades to the section of Great Eastern Highway between Berry Brow Road and Tames Road to improve safety for pedestrians and road users;
  • $1.3 million to upgrade York-Merredin Road at Ashton Street (Shire of Quairading) – Main Roads is realigning and widening the intersections in close proximity to Ashton Street in the township of Quairading to improve the traffic flow around a rail crossing, BP garage and rest area
  • $650,000 to upgrade the York-Merredin Road at Totadgin Hall Road (Shire of Merredin)
  • $28,667 to upgrade Sippe Road/Eujinin North Road (Shire of Bruce Rock)
  • $51,333 to upgrade the intersection at Bodey Street and Harper Street (Shire of Pingelly)
  • $91,300 to upgrade Swainstons Road (Shire of Kulin). 

There is to be $28.4 million injected into the WA Safer Roads Program to fund 24 regional road safety initiatives.

A total of $7.6 million will be invested in the Safer Roads Program in the Wheatbelt, including:

  • $3.5 million for various sections of Great Eastern Highway between Walgoolan and Southern Cross. This should allow for 110 lane kilometres of shoulder reconditioning and sealing in narrow sections to provide a consistent nine-metre-wide seal and installation of audible edge lines.
  • $530,000 to upgrade York-Merredin Road, including widening and sealing shoulders, rehabilitating the carriageway, improving cross sections, and installing line marking and audible edge lines
  • $100,000 to construct a northbound passing lane on Albany Highway at Marradong Road. 

These improvements are on top of $17.2 million allocated in 2018-19 and 2019-20 through the Road Trauma Trust Account to upgrade Great Eastern Highway from Walgoolan to Southern Cross.

McGowan made the announcement in the company of local MPs Darren West and Laurie Graham when inspecting the section of Great Eastern Highway that is to receiving funding under the Black Spot Program.


Read about promised state action on failing highway infrastructure, here

The State Budget also included $2.4 million to continue improvements on Toodyay Road, $20 million for upgrades to Indian Ocean Drive and $70 million for improvements to regional roads across the State identified as high-risk for run-off crashes.

The state government says the spend is on top of works undertaken in 2017-18 on the Great Eastern Highway maintenance backlog, including 4.9km of pavement rehabilitation at Tammin, Hines Hill and Goldfields Road; pavement repairs between Northam and Southern Cross; 20km of reseal between Northam and Cunderdin; asphalt works on Northam Bypass; and 32km of edge break repairs, shoulder grading and minor pavement repairs along Great Eastern Highway.

“We have a big agenda to make regional roads safer, and road users in the Wheatbelt will benefit from the upgrades funded through the Black Spot and Safer Roads programs,” McGowan says.

“In many cases simple upgrades to problem sections of roads can go a long way, and these upgrades will make a big difference to road safety in the Wheatbelt.”


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