The Victorian Government plans to use gauge convertible concrete sleepers in the upgrade of the Mildura rail line. This was a solution green groups were putting to our government years ago to save thousands of old Red Gums from being cut down for replacement sleepers on railway lines. The East Gippsland upgrade used thousands upon thousands of Red Gum sleepers to make the tracks safe for the trains to take the Tambo forests to the export woodchip mill at Geelong. The riverine forests and wetlands along the Murray in NSW should have a few less chainsaws working in them now – although firewood and fence post cutters are still major threats.
Concrete outlasts wooden sleepers by up to 30 years, does not rot, is termite and fire proof and requires less maintenance.
Jill / VNPA 29.5.06