Bruce Highway (Ingham – Innisfail), Gairloch safety improvements

Planning has started to improve safety and reduce the time of closure due to flooding on a complex section of the Bruce Highway at the Gairloch floodway, 5km north of Ingham.

The department is currently undertaking planning for safety improvements of the Gairloch section of the Bruce Highway, through the proposed implementation of wide centre line treatment and straightening the road (removing the curve).

Planning will also include aiming to reduce highway closures due to flooding by targeting a comparable immunity level at the highway immediately north and south of the Gairloch section.

The Gairloch floodway is located in the centre of a 13km flood-prone section of the Bruce Highway from the southern outskirts of Ingham to the foothills of Cardwell Range.

Historically, flooding closes the Bruce Highway at one or more locations along this 13km section every 2 years during the wet season, often multiple times, with closures varying from hours to several days.

The Gairloch floodway normally closes the highway first, and also keeps the highway closed for a longer period of time.

While the focus has been on more long-term solutions to address closures along the entire 13km section to date, both the Australian and Queensland governments recognise the benefits of reducing the time of highway closures at Gairloch due to flooding.


  • Improves safety
  • Improves network efficiency
  • Improves flood immunity
  • Contributes to economy

Key features

  • Improve safety through the delivery of wide centre line treatment
  • Improve safety by upgrading the road geometry through the approximate 2km section of the Bruce Highway to remove the curve and straighten the road
  • Reduce the time of Bruce Highway closures due to flooding through the Gairloch floodway


This project is fully funded by the Australian Government under the Bruce Highway Upgrade Program. Investment ID 2129809

Total investment
$40 million
Australian Government
$40 million

Current status

Planning started November 2021. Initial site investigations will involve survey, geotechnical investigations, cultural heritage and environmental assessment, and identification and location of public utility plant. We have started engagement with key stakeholders and will engage the broader community in 2022.

Bruce Highway (Ingham – Innisfail), Gairloch safety improvements location map

Bruce Highway Ingham Innisfail Gairloch safety improvements location map