The funding allows driver reviver sites to upgrade amenities and install new equipment. Picture: David Martinelli
The funding allows driver reviver sites to upgrade amenities and install new equipment. Picture: David Martinelli

$7.3 million available for driver reviver upgrades

Owners of driver reviver sites across Capricornia can apply for a share of $7.3 million in Australian Government funding to upgrade their rest areas.

Federal Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry said there were a great number of driver reviver sites in Capricornia, where volunteers were doing a phenomenal job providing a much-needed break and cuppa for drivers, their families and friends to help keep road users safe by tackling driver fatigue.

Ms Landry urged all site owners in Capricornia to submit their applications for funding as soon as possible.

“Anyone who’s taken a long trip across Queensland or even interstate knows just how quickly fatigue can creep up on you and how lifesaving it can be to take a well-deserved break, perhaps even switch drivers,” she said.

Federal Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry. Picture: Allan Reinikka
Federal Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry. Picture: Allan Reinikka

“That’s the sort of road safety behaviour driver reviver sites promote, here in Capricornia and across the nation, by providing much-loved amenities such as shelters and barbecues or just a cuppa with a biscuit or two over a chat to tackle fatigue.

“For regional areas like Capricornia, these rest sites become even more critical as our communities, hard-working truckies and our families from other parts of the country depend on often long-slog trips to stay connected, travel to work or get our Aussie goods to markets.

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“If there is one New Year’s resolution I encourage every Australian to make, it’s to take road safety seriously and do what they can to help keep themselves and others safe on our roads, including taking breaks when they need it, even if it adds another half-hour to their trip.

“Because that half-hour can be the difference between life and death, by ensuring they remain an alert driver who can respond rapidly to a situation on the road.”

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack, said the funding would allow driver reviver sites to upgrade amenities and install new equipment.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack. Picture: Stuart Quinn
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack. Picture: Stuart Quinn

“It will also support the establishment of new sites to expand the current network and reach even more road users, with priority given to restoring driver reviver sites affected by the horrific bushfires of 2019 and 2020,” Mr McCormack said.

“Driver Reviver is a community program that has been operating in Australia for 30 years now.

“The sites are managed by volunteers from a wide range of organisations and community groups who give their time to promote road safety and help reduce the road toll by providing travellers with free beverages, snacks and conversation.”

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Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz said driver fatigue had been identified as one of the ‘Fatal Five’ road safety factors that contribute to road trauma, being a factor in up to 30 per cent of all deaths and severe injuries on Australian roads.

“Driver Reviver sites are critical in tackling driver fatigue to make our roads safer, which is why I am proud to be part of a Government that continues to invest in the program, with $8 million committed under the Driver Reviver Upgrade Program and $1.2 million already out the door through the Road Safety Awareness and Enablers Fund,” Mr Buchholz said.

Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz. Picture: Matt Taylor
Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz. Picture: Matt Taylor

“Driver reviver owners will be able to use this round’s funding for a range of much-needed amenities to entice road users to make good use of their sites, such as shelters, picnic tables, power and water facilities, barbecues, parking, lighting and of course equipment such as fridges or hot water urns that allow them to offer that much-needed cuppa with their friendly chats.

“Road safety is everyone’s responsibility and while our government is doing what it can to ensure Australia moves towards ‘Vision Zero’ of zero deaths on our nation’s roads, initiatives such as the driver reviver program showcase what governments and communities can achieve when working together and, of course, the role road users can play to ensure we all get home safely at the end of each trip.”

Round 2 of the Driver Reviver Site Upgrade Program is a targeted competitive grant round with applications closing February 25.