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Thursday, 1 March 2012
Page: 2507

Mr NEUMANN (Blair) (13:42): That was a most extraordinary contribution from the member for Flynn. He said that there was no linkage between pay rates, conditions on the road and accidents and fatalities. I refer the member for Flynn to the 2008 National Transport Commission report Safe payments: addressing the underlying causes of unsafe practices in the road transport industry. They clearly found a linkage between pay rates and unsafe driving. Some pay rates set by owner drivers and employers create incentives to drive unsafely, resulting in poor outcomes on the roads. We see 330 Australians killed every year in truck crashes. Trucking fatalities are 10 times the national fatality average across all industries. This is a very serious question.

The member for Flynn talked about us needing to spend more money on roads in this country—that is what he said. But he should know that those opposite oppose the $36 billion that we are putting into roads, rail and ports through our nation-building fund. His side of politics oppose it. In our home state of Queensland, $8.5 billion is being spent. We have doubled the road funding that the previous coalition government provided. And we are spending 10 times the rail funding.

I want to show the quality of those who represent the coalition in this place and elsewhere, and purport to do so—like the member for Flynn. Today in the Queensland Times in Ipswich the LNP candidate for Bundamba said that it was fair and reasonable for a pressure group to say that the money that we spent on the Ipswich Motorway was a waste. The coalition have campaigned against road infrastructure in Queensland, such as the Ipswich Motorway and the Blacksoil interchange time and time again. The Howard government capped the road funding for the Warrego Highway and we increased it massively. So do not come into this place and complain that we are not spending enough money on roads and railways et cetera, because those opposite have a shocking record when it comes to road infrastructure in my home state of Queensland. In three elections in a row, they campaigned against the most vital road funding initiative in Queensland—funding for the road that links Brisbane, Ipswich and Toowoomba. Their position at the last election was to stop construction on that road. Now the LNP candidate is also opposing it.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER ( Hon. BC Scott ): Order! The debate is interrupted in accordance with standing order 43 and the debate may be resumed at a later hour, when the member for Blair will have leave to continue his remarks.