Zero emissions won’t achieve a zero-fatality rate: Dametto

12th June 2022

State Member for Hinchinbrook and KAP Deputy Leader Nick Dametto at Gairloch Washaway.


Katter’s Australian Party (KAP) Deputy Leader and Hinchinbrook MP Nick Dametto has criticised the Palaszczuk Labor Government for having road upgrades project priorities backward.

From 2018 to 2021 in the Hinchinbrook, Townsville, Burdekin and Charters Towers local government areas, there were more than 20 fatal accidents that occurred on the Bruce Highway.

The Hinchinbrook MP said despite this significant number of tragic accidents the State Labor Government continues to invest in projects such as Queensland’s Electric Super Highway before addressing road safety issues in North Queensland.

“In Australia, during the 2020/21 financial year, there were 580,495 petrol vehicles sold, 346,990 diesel cars sold, and just 5149 electric vehicles sold,” Mr Dametto said.

“The fact the State Labor Government continues to throw money at Queensland’s Electric Super Highway before investing in lifesaving Bruce Highway upgrades in North Queensland is salt in the wound for anyone who’s lost a loved one out on our roads.

“Considering last financial year’s electric vehicle sales in Australia made up less than a percent of all vehicles sold, how can the State justify investing in projects that only benefit a handful of people when they could be utilising these funds to improve conditions for North Queensland road users and effectively save lives.

“The cost of an electric vehicle in Australia is unaffordable for the majority of people. For example, one of the cheapest electric vehicles in Australia is an SUV which starts at around $44,000 in comparison to a similar SUV that runs on petrol which is about $28,000.[1]

“I do understand that the State Government is working towards achieving zero emissions, however in my eyes a zero-fatality rate on the Bruce Highway should be a higher priority.

Mr Dametto said there were sections of the Bruce Highway with extreme safety concerns such as the Gairloch Washaway and Five Mile Creek swimming hole turn off, which needed to be addressed immediately.

“The Gairloch Flood Immunity Project continues to be stalled or encounters excessive delays and the worst thing is, the money has been sitting there for the project for over 10 years,” he said.

“But then when it comes to the Queensland Electric Super Highway and investing in net-zero related outcomes the Palaszczuk Labor Government is quick to find the money and do whatever is required to get the project underway.”

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Nick Dametto MP