No-show Malinauskas sparks River Road fury for failing to front residents over ‘death trap’ plan

Sunday 10 September, 2023

Pic-op Premier Peter Malinauskas has lapped up the media spotlight riding in the back of ambulances, but has betrayed River Road residents by boycotting a community challenge to ride as a passenger in a truck along the dangerous route.

Furious Adelaide Hills community members, truck drivers and the Opposition jointly issued a challenge to Peter Malinauskas - ride as a passenger in a truck as it attempts to navigate past an oncoming heavy vehicle on dangerous River Road.

Today, the exercise went ahead with caution to highlight cries from the community that River Road - Labor’s solution to divert trucks from Hahndorf’s main street - is too dangerous to accommodate 130 trucks a day which could result in tragedy and serious injury.

The driver of a fully loaded log pile truck also struggled - at low speed - to navigate River Road.

Because of Peter Malinauskas’ no-show, residents from River Road were once again denied the opportunity to have their say on Labor’s dangerous plan.

Leader of the Opposition, David Speirs, rode as a passenger in one of the trucks to experience the danger firsthand.

Shadow Minister for Transport and Infrastructure, Vincent Tarzia, said Peter Malinauskas has betrayed the Adelaide Hills community.

“It’s a gutless move by Peter Malinauskas to turn down this important opportunity and community challenge - the Premier claims Labor’s diversion plan down River Road is safe but refuses to take the drive himself,” Mr Tarzia said.

This is classic hypocrisy from Peter Malinauskas. River Road is too dangerous for the Premier, but Labor says it is perfectly safe for school children, cyclists, motorists, and heavy vehicle operators to use.

“Peter Malinauskas needs to front up and admit he got this one wrong. There’s still time to reverse his decision and come up with a proper long-term solution like the Hahndorf Bypass that everyone benefits from in a safe way.”

Member for Heysen, Josh Teague, said Peter Malinauskas has shown his true colours.

“Peter Malinauskas is happy to parade in ambulances for media in a controlled environment, but on the tough issues, like this one, he runs and hides,” Mr Teague said.

“Every Adelaide Hills person who knows River Road says it’s a death trap and too dangerous for huge trucks - these are people who know the area well.

“Peter Malinauskas probably hasn’t even driven on River Road but somehow, the Premier knows better than locals who have spent their whole lives in the Adelaide Hills.

“And if River Road is so safe, why is Peter Malinauskas spending money to fix it. None of this makes sense and Labor must put the brakes on this plan. If they don’t someone could be killed or seriously injured.”