The Australian and Western Australian Governments have brought forward the release of funding for road safety upgrades on Indian Ocean Drive as part of the Federal Government’s $44.2 million Budget commitment for regional WA projects.
The $7 million in advance funding for Indian Ocean Drive will go towards building additional passing lanes between Two Rocks and Lancelin.
These will include two northbound and two southbound overtaking lanes between the Ledge Point and Seabird turn-offs—both known black spots.
According to a joint statement from the office of Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester and WA Minister for Transport Rita Saffioti, in the five years to December 2016, this section of the Indian Ocean Drive saw 137 crashes.
Minister Rita Saffioti said the funding announcement followed a series of fatalities along the scenic route.
“These crashes are enormous tragedies and that’s why one of the first things I did as Minister for Transport was to request my agencies to come up with further safety options and seek federal funding,” Ms. Saffioti said.
Construction of the first two passing lanes located either side of the Ledge Point intersection will be completed by mid-2018, while the remaining pair situated about eight kilometres further south will be built in 2018/19.
“Main Roads has also secured state Black Spot funding to install audible edge lines for approximately 30 kilometres of Indian Ocean Drive south of Seabird, with completion expected in 2018. The multi-agency safety review currently being undertaken will also recommend other treatments to help improve safety along this route,” said the Minister.
The Western Australian Government has also pledged to commit a further $11 million towards the regional projects covered in the Federal Government’s 2017-18 Budget commitment.