Recent flooding events across most of Australia’s east coast have caused unprecedented damage to the road infrastructure of both states, leaving a clean-up bill that is sure to amass millions, if not billions of dollars. Additionally, landslides and sinkholes that have also occurred in regions such as Lismore and its neighbouring towns, has seen many bridges also washed away, leading to huge access issues for both residents and vital assistance services.
With gaping potholes, cracked and badly disintegrated roads, and roads that have been completely wiped out as a result of landslides, not only will the clean-up bill be extensive, but the time and work required to see these roads back to even a usable state will also be considerable.
Currently, many NSW and Queensland councils are scrambling to find and secure funds in order to urgently repair roads, to enable the rebuilding efforts to continue. Without passable roads and safe access for aid organisations, trades and the residents themselves, the rebuild will only be delayed further.
In NSW councils are responsible for approximately 90% of the entire NSW road network. This includes ensuring roads are well maintained and safe for road users. In QLD this figure is slightly less with councils responsible for around 80% of the state’s roads and bridges.
Road maintenance, even prior to the devastating floods of 2022, was already one of the biggest items on a council’s budget, with this figure set to completely blow out. With councils forced to apply for federal government support and source road maintenance crews, like the team at Kennedy Civil, to assist in the repair efforts.
Drivers causing further damage by using damaged roads
Flood damaged roads not only present a problem in terms of access, with detours and the like having to be set up, but they also cause significant wear and tear on vehicles. For residents who are already struggling with the effects of the floods, this is an inconvenience and a cost that they could most certainly do without.
Roads that are badly damaged can cause significant damage to vehicles and can even result in injury and loss of life, so it is pivotal that repairing the road infrastructure in these states happens sooner rather than later.
Some of the damage to vehicles that has been reported in the aftermath of the floods includes, burst and flat tyres, damaged suspension, damaged steering and panel damage from loose objects.
How long with the recovery effort take?
The NSW Minister for Roads, Ms Natalie Ward, stated at a recent press conference that there was no set timeline for when flood-damaged roads would be fixed, and whilst this may seem like a cop-out to many residents who are desperate to see their towns start to rebuild, this response is completely relevant to the work required. Just like a painted wall must be left alone to dry, it is imperative that the road foundations also have an opportunity to thoroughly dry before any restoration works can commence.
Fixing Damage Roads – What is The Process?
Resheeting is often considered the best method when it comes to repairing flood-damaged roads, however, there are more effective ways that can be utilised, which includes the use of stabilising equipment that uses materials already within the roads, rather than using new materials. Given the enormous costs associated with repairing such large areas of roads from this flood event, this may be a more cost-effective road repair option for councils.
Whilst councils in both states, as outlined above, are responsible for a vast majority of the road network, there are of course the private roads in which residents themselves are responsible for. These roads often provide vital access for residents, without which they may not even be able to access their homes.
Kennedy Civil – Road Construction Experts
The team at Kennedy Civil are experienced road construction experts, assisting in the entire road construction and maintenance process. Our comprehensive road construction service includes design, contracting, implementation, supervision and maintenance services for roads across Australia’s east coast region from Brisbane through to Sydney.
Further to our road construction services, the team at Kennedy Civil are also proud to offer bridge construction and maintenance services, with both of these services due to recent flooding events certainly in high demand.
Our dedicated and experienced road construction and bridge construction teams, work tirelessly to assist local government councils as well as private residents with all road and bridge construction projects.
With damaged roads and bridges in these areas vital to flood recovery efforts, the team at Kennedy Civil understand the importance of providing timely, effective and high-quality road restoration, repair and construction work, to enable residents to move forward to the next stages of the recovery efforts. Get in contact with us today!