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Network 6 Access approved for road trains in Southwest WA

Road trains have been granted Network 6 Access from Roelands Hill into Bunbury.

The announcement made by Main Roads WA at the recent Livestock and Rural Transport Association of Western Australia (LRTAWA) conference will help fill some of the existing gaps in the network.

According to Mark Talbot, LRTAWA Executive committee member road transport companies running restrictive access vehicles will be able to go from Esperance to Bunbury and north all on one permit.

“It’s a big deal for us as it gives us a link from the eastern part of the state across to the West Coast and that link now joins into the Forest Highway which runs up through into Perth and beyond,” he said.

According to Talbot, who runs Wedderburn Transport, the decision had been five years in the making with the LRTAWA lobbying the Western Australian government to reduce gaps in the existing network.

After lengthy trials, working in close conjunction with Main Roads WA, LRTAWA were able to prove the operation of road trains in the area could be done safely without imposition on the public.

According to Talbot, recent upgrades to road infrastructure in the south also helped hasten the approval process.

“The relationship we have with Main Roads WA has been built up over a number of years. We’ve got some good people in there that are prepared to listen to what we have got to say and try and help us make it work,” he said.

“Now we can run road trains from Esperance to Bunbury and north all on the one permit without having to break up trailers which is massive news for the livestock and grain industries. It’s a win for efficiencies and safety. Having to stop and unhook trailers and rely on subcontractors to come and pull your trailer through was not ideal. This announcement is a pretty big deal for us.”

Network 7 Access trials would also commence shortly said Talbot with Main Roads WA about to commence brake testing.

“Hopefully we can get to the point where in the next six months we can use a Network 7 vehicle which in livestock terms for cattle is a five deck road train which we can drive right through to the Forrest Highway and access all the way north of Perth. That’s very exciting for the Livestock industry.”

“From our point of view that’s a very efficient piece of equipment that we can run through there. Main Roads WA is also looking at other roads that can run off that network to help businesses link in and access the wider network.”

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