SOCIAL ALLIANCE upper house candidate and Fremantle councillor Sam Wainwright has reacted to Melville council’s claims more freight can’t go onto rail as “absurd”.
As part of its own campaign in support of the Perth Freight Link, the council released a 10-point fact sheet designed to counter what it says are “myths” about the project.
“More freight on rail is not an alternative as 95 per cent of containers are unpacked within the Perth metro area so the extra handling and transport costs involved would be unviable for both businesses and consumers,” the council says in the fact sheet, which was authorised by CEO Shayne Silcox.
But Mr Wainwright, a former wharfie, says the council has ignored maps put out by Fremantle Port which show more than 60 per cent of those containers were unpacked along the existing freight line.
“Indeed, if you look at the map you can see that the rail line services the two major industrial areas where containers need to be transported to.”
Mr Wainwright says the Barnett government has undermined rail constantly and simply reinstating a subsidy would boost it significantly, he said, saying people don’t realise trucks are heavily subsidised because roads need to be built far stronger to cope with them.