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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Transport & Main Roads
    The Honourable Paul Lucas

    HOUGHTON HIGWAY SPEED LIMIT TO BE REDUCED PERMANENTLY TO 60KM/H

    Minister for Transport & Main Roads
    The Honourable Paul Lucas

    Thursday, November 25, 2004

    HOUGHTON HIGWAY SPEED LIMIT TO BE REDUCED PERMANENTLY TO 60KM/H

    The speed limit on the Houghton Highway will be reduced permanently from 80kmh to 60kmh from 1 December, after a nine-month trial of a 60kmh limit showed it was safer.

    The Minister for Transport and Main Roads, Paul Lucas, said today that a report on the trial recommended the speed limit reduction.

    Permanent 60kmh signs will be erected on the bridge on November 30.

    The 60kmh limit has continued to operate since the end of the speed-reduction trial in June.

    "Safety is Main Roads' first priority and an analysis of crash data in the trial study shows that 60kmh is safer," Mr Lucas said.

    "The statistics say it all - only three crashes occurred during the nine months from September 1, 2003, to June 1, 2004.

    "This compares with nine crashes in the nine months ending June 2003 and 18 crashes in the nine months to June 2002.

    "The recent serious crash where a motorist was trapped in her car and traffic was held up for several hours shows that even one crash is a cause for concern.

    "However, there is no arguing with the downward trend in crash figures with a 60kmh speed limit."

    The Member for Redcliffe, Ray Hollis, said: "I am confident that a 60 km/h limit will help reduce the number and severity of crashes on the bridge."

    "The success of the trial can be attributed to the majority of motorists driving responsibly - and I congratulate them on that," Mr Hollis said.

    "The State Government, Redcliffe City Council and the Queensland Police Service also have worked closely together."

    Mr Lucas said other government plans for the Houghton Highway included:

    * A study looking at when a new bridge to Redcliffe might be built is expected to be finalised next month. * The study by consultants Eppell Olsen also is looking at the effects of upgrading other parts of the road network, including the Bruce Highway, and it is looking at the condition and long-term future of the old Hornibrook Bridge. * The Beattie Government's five-year road-funding program, the Road Implementation Program (RIP), released last week provided $5 million to plan for duplication of the Houghton Highway, including pedestrian and bikeway facilities. * The RIP planning project will consider the recommendations of the Eppell Olsen study. It also will do a geotechnical assessment for a new bridge. * The public will be fully consulted about the planning study.

    Media inquiries: Paul Childs 3237 1942 or 0407 131 654.