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Published: Sun, July 08, 2018
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

Melting Road Stops Traffic in Australia, Angers Drivers

Melting Road Stops Traffic in Australia, Angers Drivers

Melting bitumen has forced drivers in Australia to abandon their vehicles after the tyres became coated with tar.

More than 60 motorists were affected by the incident, with many needing to get their tyres replaced after bitumen lifted on the Millaa Millaa-Malanda Road on the Atherton Tablelands.

A dramatic shift in weather in Queensland, Australia caused the tarmac on the roads to melt and stick to auto tyres and bodywork.

Motorist Bridget Daley said her tyres were covered in three inches of bitumen.

According to Jaggan resident Deborah Stacey, the moment the sun came out around midday today, the bitumen turned to glue.

"There were people that were pulled up on the side of the road and they were in total and complete disbelief as to what had happened to their vehicles", she added.

"It's a combination of factors", district director Sandra Burke said. "There was emulsion everywhere; a lot of soft tar sprayed in big globs and sticking to trucks wheels", she said.

Last week, the bitumen was cracked and loose with gravel due to wet weather affecting the seal, forcing the Department of Transport and Main Roads to put in a temporary reduced speed limit of 60km/h to prevent gravel from damaging driver's windshields while they swept the road.

The works were carried out by an independent contractor and Ms Burke said it would be part of the investigation into the issue.

"TMR will ensure compensation is paid as soon as possible".

"I have never seen anything like it and when the reports started coming through yesterday, it was just incredible", local mayor Joe Paronella told the BBC.

Vince Whalley, who runs a tyre shop at Malanda, said the damage to vehicles was significant.

"I would certainly be talking to the department about possible compensation".

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