Community News

See the road network that’s being maintained – Asphalt is placed on the road surface for all vehicles to smoothly travel on. A sprayed seal is also placed on the road surface to allow rainwater to run off quickly and prevent water damage. This means a longer lasting road, with less maintenance requirements.

Asphalting season has kicked in!

Vision available of asphalting work in northern NSW

Ever wonder why so many road crews are out and about during spring and summer time?

The warmer climate is the perfect time for asphalting and upgrading roads across the state, ensuring safer travel for all.

John Dinan, Roads and Maritime’s Director for Regional Maintenance, says our Asphalt Replacement Teams have got a huge project ahead in resurfacing around 175 kilometres of road before the end of summer.

“The warmer weather allows the asphalt to remain stable and easy to compact before it cools.”

Asphalting work will start this month on the Ballina Bypass (Pacific Highway) west of Ballina to address settlement and shape correction, as well as asphalt works on the Bruxner Highway near Alstonville for shape correction.

Work is also being scheduled on the Pacific Highway around the intersection of Oxley Highway, and also at Coffs Harbour.

Work was recently completed on Tamarind Drive at Ballina to strengthen the pavement and mitigate flooding. Roads and Maritime will keep motorists updated when work starts and while it progresses.

Asphalting occurs all year round in the far north of NSW since wet weather happens more than the rest of the state.

“Generally around 2.5 tonnes per cubic metre – so around 437,000 tonnes are laid each year. Depending on the worksite, up to 2000 tonnes of asphalt can be paved per day. To minimise disruption to peak hour traffic, road work will usually be done overnight,” John says.

“Asphalt is safe, smooth and durable and is up to 100 per cent reusable. It’s also flexible and new technologies used is making asphalt a more sustainable choice for road surfaces.”

Dougall Broadfoot, Australian Asphalt Pavement Association’s NSW Executive Director, says motorists are not allowed to travel on newly laid asphalt until it has cooled down. Asphalt must be compacted and allowed to cool down to below 60 degrees Celsius before any motorists can travel through.

“If the new asphalt surface is not allowed to cool down sufficiently, passing vehicles may affect the smoothness of the surface before it sets. By driving over soft asphalt it may create bumps and grooves on the surface, which would be a less smooth journey for motorists. An uneven surface also causes water to pool in the grooves,” Dougall says.

“So please be patient when near worksites, for the safety of yourself and workers. Follow the instruction of traffic controllers and the reduced speed limit of 40 km/h when work is carried out.”

John says Roads and Maritime has a target of resurfacing 2.3 per cent of its asphalt road network every year.

“Depending on how it’s maintained or aged in certain areas of NSW, it will have to be re-laid every few years and some even up to many decades later,” John says.

“In the last four years, Roads and Maritime and industry partners have laid over a million tonnes asphalt on NSW roads.”