Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke has today welcomed the completion of upgrades to the Saleyards Truck Wash at Cowra which will improve productivity for the freight industry.

“Efficient truck wash facilities are helping keep the freight industry moving, while also providing benefits for the environment and biosecurity,” Ms Cooke said.

“The upgraded facility meets all operating, legislative and compliance standards for environmental sustainability, has a reduced impact on stock and is more user-friendly for truck operators.”

Cowra Shire Council was awarded $75,000 under the NSW Government’s Restart NSW funding, matched by a further $75,000 from the Australian Government. The funding is part of the joint Fixing Country Truck Washes program and Cowra Shire Council also contributed to the upgrade.

Council contributed $39,750 to that total project cost and Mayor Bill West said the upgrade was a win-win for animals and industry.

“The upgrades not only improve facilities at the Cowra Saleyards, but enhance and protect the value of livestock and improve animal welfare outcomes,” Mayor of Cowra, Bill West explained.

“The recent upgrade will increase water-efficiency and improve conditions for livestock by utilising water from the truck-wash facilities recycled for irrigating holding paddocks for stock.

“Irrigating the holding paddocks will over time provide fodder for sheep left in yards overnight, getting them off the concrete holding yards and onto grassed areas while they await transportation. This will be better for transport operators, buyers, sellers and livestock, at the site,” he added.

Works included upgrading the effluent receiving and treatment infrastructure, new pumps, lighting and CCTV, upgraded driver amenities, including improved disability access and the installation of an irrigation system to allow for wastewater reuse. The site is also more suitable for use during wet weather.

Ms Cooke said truck washes had an important role in stopping the spread of weeds and livestock waste as well as providing facilities for the people who keep our freight industry moving.

“Reliable and user-friendly truck washes reduce the risk of spills and weed spread, ensure waste is treated appropriately and provide amenities that reduce fatigue,” Ms Cooke said.

“Freight is worth more than $60 billion to the NSW economy each year and we are committed to investing in infrastructure which increases productivity and reduces costs for industry.

“Through our partnership with the Australian Government, the Fixing Country Truck Washes program is reducing wait and wash times and improving safety and environmental outcomes right across the state.”

The NSW Government component of the Fixing Country Truck Washes program is part of the $543 million Fixing Country Roads program which is improving and building efficient freight networks across regional NSW.