10 May 2023

Poor condition of PDR draws criticism from cop

| Matt Nicholls
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I CAN’T believe how bad the road is. It’s a disgrace, really.

Those are the words of one of the state’s most experienced traffic cops, who couldn’t fathom the state of the Peninsula Developmental Road after driving up for the Weipa Fishing Classic.

“I knew some of it was unsealed but I thought it would be much better than what it was,” he told Cape York Weekly while getting a coffee at Capeaccino.

While Cape York locals are used to the nuances of the PDR which can change from day to day, a lot of visitors are not.

And while the Department of Transport and Main Roads has sealed more than 250km in the past eight years, there’s still another 250km to get the road fully sealed between Laura and Weipa.

“They’ve got it all wrong,” said Musgrave Roadhouse owner John McDowall said.

“They have done the easiest bits of dirt first and left the worst parts until the end.

“The better parts of the dirt were easier to drive on and maintain. The first bit they should have fixed was between Coen and Musgrave, which has always been the worst part of the PDR.”

Mr McDowall was also critical of the quality of some of the sealing works, saying some companies were doing “substandard work”.

“When you drive it, take notice of the difference in the quality of the sealed sections. You can tell which companies have done it as there is a massive difference in the quality of the product.”

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