From 3pm Saturday, October 29, the eastbound lanes of the Toowoomba Bypass between the Warrego West interchange at Charlton and the Warrego East interchange at Helidon Spa, will be closed to through traffic for at least a week.
The heavy vehicles unit at the Department of Transport and Main Roads made the announcement late last night as a “safety precaution” due to movements detected in a cutting east of the New England Highway.
The eastbound lanes between Boundary Street interchange and the Mort Street interchange will remain open.
Geotechnical consultants have been monitoring the cutting since last year’s wet season to enable a redesign and reconstruction of the cut, said TMR.
“After heavy rain between October 18-24, 2022 further movement has been detected,” said the heavy vehicles unit.
Truckie Deon Kington alerted drivers to the safety issues on the bypass a few weeks ago on the Facebook group On the Pads Qld Edition, later telling Big Rigs he felt it would only take one decent downpour of rain for a dangerous slip to occur.
“It’s going to go, it’s just a matter of time when,” said Kington at the time.
“It’ll close the eastbound lane down.”
From the road, he said it looks like a 500ml crack in the concrete.
Just 3km further east of where he took the picture for this story, he said work was already underway to fix a smaller slip in the wall.
TMR adds that it is anticipating further inclement weather and is concerned there is a risk material may fall onto the east bound lanes of the Toowoomba Bypass.
How truckies will be impacted
All eastbound Type 1 road trains travelling beyond Toowoomba will need to break down at the decoupling facility at Nass Road.
All eastbound heavy vehicles are to detour through Toowoomba via Toowoomba Connection Road and can use the old range crossing.
All eastbound traffic on the Toowoomba Bypass will be required to exit at the Mort Street interchange at Harlaxton.
Eastbound traffic on the Warrego Highway will not be able to enter the Toowoomba Bypass at the Warrego West interchange at Charlton.
Northbound traffic on the Gore Highway will be directed off the Toowoomba Bypass at the Warrego West interchange at Charlton to detour through Toowoomba.
The westbound lanes of the Toowoomba Bypass are not affected and remain open to all traffic, including heavy vehicles.
Works to repair the cutting are scheduled to start early in the first quarter next year.
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