BLACK SPOT: TMR revealed the top five most dangerous intersections in the Whitsunday region.
BLACK SPOT: TMR revealed the top five most dangerous intersections in the Whitsunday region. Claudia Alp

Whitsundays' most dangerous intersections revealed

THE Gregory Cannon Valley Rd and Proserpine-Shute Harbour Rd intersection has been named as the most dangerous in the Whitsunday region.

Data obtained by the Whitsunday Times from the Department of Transport and Main Roads revealed the most common car accident locations across the Whitsundays between July 1, 2015 and June 30, 2018.

The crash hotspot, approximately 10km south-west of Airlie Beach, was first on the list with seven serious crashes and 15 serious casualties reported during this time.

"Serious casualties” were defined as when a person died within 30 days or when a person was transported to hospital from injuries sustained in a road traffic crash.

RACQ spokesperson Lucinda Ross said the high-speed limit (100km/h) and the position of the intersection on a curve could be factors to its "poor crash history”.

The Gregory Cannon Valley Rd and Proserpine-Shute Harbour Rd intersection has been ranked as the most dangerous in the Whitsunday region.
The Gregory Cannon Valley Rd and Proserpine-Shute Harbour Rd intersection has been ranked as the most dangerous in the Whitsunday region. Claudia Alp

Upgrades to the Gregory Cannon Valley Rd and Proserpine-Shute Harbour Rd intersection will begin later this year after $2.25 million was allocated to the problem spot in June 2018

A TMR spokesperson said the project, funded under the Safer Roads Sooner program, included road widening, installation of a concrete central median strip and intersection lighting. 

The rail crossing will also be levelled to allow drivers to move smoothly through the intersection, the spokesperson said.

Bowen's Brisbane St and Powell St intersection, managed by Whitsunday Regional Council, was ranked second on the list with three serious crashes recorded and just as many serious casualties.

A WRC spokesperson said council had sought and received black spot funding for upgrade works.

"The engineering team are currently developing a design to improve safety whilst catering for heavy vehicle movements through this intersection,” the spokesperson said.

Bowen's Brisbane St and Powell St intersection has been ranked second in a list of the Whitsunday region's crash hotspots.
Bowen's Brisbane St and Powell St intersection has been ranked second in a list of the Whitsunday region's crash hotspots. Claudia Alp

RACQ head of public policy Rebecca Michael said the intersection would be converted to a new roundabout under the Federal Government's Black Spot program.

"We know how critical this funding is to local councils who do much of the heavy lifting improving our road network,” she said.

"We believe the upgrade will help reduce the risk and the number of crashes occurring at this location.”

Two sections of the Bruce Highway, Koolachu Rd at Gregory River and Lethebrook Rd at Thoopara, were ranked as third and fourth respectively.

The Bruce Highway and Koolachu Rd intersection recorded one serious crash and four serious casualties while the Bruce Highway and Lethebrook Rd intersection recorded one serious crash and three serious casualties.

The Bruce Highway and Koolachu Rd intersection at Gregory River has been ranked third in a list of the Whitsunday region's crash hotspots.
The Bruce Highway and Koolachu Rd intersection at Gregory River has been ranked third in a list of the Whitsunday region's crash hotspots. Claudia Alp

The TMR spokesperson said the Bruce Highway intersections had been assessed for potential "safety enhancements”. 

"Lethebrook Rd intersection has been identified for potential upgrade works. Funding for these works will be considered against state-wide priorities,” the spokesperson said.

"The Koolachu Rd intersection does not currently have any upgrade works planned, but the intersection will be monitored.”

The Bruce Highway and Lethebrook Rd intersection at Thoopara  has been ranked fourth in a list of the Whitsunday region's crash hotspots.
The Bruce Highway and Lethebrook Rd intersection at Thoopara has been ranked fourth in a list of the Whitsunday region's crash hotspots. Claudia Alp

Hibiscus Rd and Orchid Rd intersection at Cannon Valley was fifth on the list with one serious crash and two serious casualties recorded.

A WRC spokesperson said while the intersection is under the control of council, no works had been planned at this location to date.

On March 29, Prime Minister Scott Morrison unveiled $2.2 billion in road safety funding to be split across the country with Queensland to receive $102 million under the scheme.

The Hibiscus Rd and Orchid Rd intersection at Cannon Valley was ranked fifth in a list of the Whitsunday region's crash hotspots.
The Hibiscus Rd and Orchid Rd intersection at Cannon Valley was ranked fifth in a list of the Whitsunday region's crash hotspots. Claudia Alp

Councils across Australia will be directly given $1.1 billion under the Roads to Recovery Program, which will fix potholes, curbing and better lighting.

Councils will also be able to apply for money for extra safety measures, including:

- $550 million for black spots to improve safety at accident sites. The Black Spot Program, which targets high-risk locations, has on average reduced serious crashed by about one-third.

- $571 million to provide more rest areas and truck stops for heavy vehicles and to fix wooden bridges, making sure school buses and emergency vehicles can get across them.

More information on road works and upgrades can be found on the TMR website.