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8 March, 2021

Questions remain over bridge

Questions remain over the future and safety of the Barron River Bridge at Kuranda.

By Phil Brandel

TMR staff carrying out inspections underneath the Barron River Bridge.

Questions remain over the future and safety of the Barron River Bridge at Kuranda after the Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) announced that a report into the bridge would be handed to the Roads and Transport Minister before the end of February, but as of deadline this hasn’t happened.

The delay of the report and the admission from TMR that the report would not be released to the public has many local residents and politicians nervous. The bridge was closed to one lane of traffic and new weight restrictions were put in place in November of last year.

Last week the TMR issued a statement about the current situation with the bridge.

 “The Barron River Bridge report is currently being finalised and we are continuing inspections," The spokesperson wrote.

 “We understand the strong community interest and will provide an update as soon as possible.

 “This update will include advice about the duration of the single-lane closure.

 “The single-lane closure is a precaution while we carry out investigations.

 “The average delay is less than two minutes.

 “The bridge is safe. We thank motorists and residents for their patience”.

Member for Kennedy, Bob Katter said motorists had a right to know if the bridge was safe to use and for how the single lane access and weight restrictions will remain.

“Either it is safe, or it is not safe, and it certainly looks like it is not when we get a response like this,” Mr Katter said.

Mr Katter said he will be writing to the Queensland Transport Minister, Mark Bailey regarding the Bridge.

“I will demand a copy of the report,” Mr Katter said.

“We are being treated as mugs in North Queensland. The State Government would not be keeping Brisbane residents in the dark like this, and they would be spending money to fix the situation. They are now estimated to spend $7B on Brisbane’s Cross River Rail, meanwhile we are down to one lane at the Kennedy Highway at Kuranda with no action from the State Government in sight.”

Kuranda local Howard Small is not happy about TMR’s stance on the report of the bridge and has started a petition to lobby the state government into releasing details of the bridge.

“I believe it is time for the public to be heard and have started a petition to that effect,” Mr Small said.

“We are all impacted by the lane closure on the Barron River Bridge at Kuranda but are being kept in the dark by the Department of Transport and Main Roads which has denied the public access to the promised report that was completed in February.

“The effect on the public is so great that we are entitled to a full and frequent disclosure by TMR on this issue and plans to resolve it. To deny us access to the promised report is unacceptable and I have started an on-line petition in an attempt resolve this.”

Mr Small said he is not happy that TMR have claimed that the general public would not be able to understand the report.

“TMR is refusing to release this publicly-funded report, the property of all citizens, on the spurious grounds that it is a technical document, apparently beyond the capacity of the public to understand,” he said.

“We need this report and any other information that TMR has or obtains in the future so we can understand what risk the bridge presents to our safety and future well-being.”

To add your name to the petition, go to search for Release the Kuranda Bridge Report at

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