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Roads Melt In Oz “Winter Heatwave”!!

July 8, 2018

By Paul Homewood


h/t quasoveritas/mary stewart


This is typical of the garbage we get so often from so called newspapers:




BRITAIN is not alone in experiencing a record-breaking heatwave, with soaring temperatures across the world being blamed for multiple deaths.

Roads have melted in Australia…..

Up to 50 motorists were left with their tyres covered in bitumen that had melted on a stretch of road outside the Australian city of Cairns in northern Queensland. Tablelands regional mayor Joe Paronella said: ‘I have never seen anything like it.’



You will probably smell fake news already!

In Australia it just happens to be winter at the moment, and temperatures in July tend to be the lowest of the year:


Graph of selected monthly climate statistics


In the week prior to July 6th, when the Metro article was published, temperatures ranged from 24.2C to 27.7C, perfectly consistent with a monthly mean of 25.8C:




But what about all of that melting tarmac? After all. photos don’t lie!

It turns out it was due to a botched road repair job:

A botched bitumen job on a road in Queensland’s far north has caused chaos, with tyres covered in tar and vehicles having to be abandoned.

Other cars have been damaged by lumps of tar thrown off the tyres of trucks and cars on a stretch of the Millaa Millaa-Malanda Road on the Atherton Tablelands.

Authorities closed the road on Wednesday after more than a dozen motorists had to have tyres replaced after the bitumen lifted.

Vince Whalley, who runs a tyre shop at Malanda, 70 kilometres south of Cairns, told the ABC that damage to vehicles had been significant: “The tar coming off the tyres is knocking bumper bars loose, taking panels out underneath.”

He said one tourist paid $1200 for a new set of tyres.

Motorist Bridget Daley told the ABC her tyres were covered in bitumen, which had also flown off, striking her bumper bar and snapping it off.

“I was absolutely horrified to find that there was [75 millimetres] of bitumen coated around all four wheels of my vehicle,” she said.

“It was like we were insects caught in a spider’s web and we were sinking.

“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.”

Another driver posted to social media saying the roads were a disgrace.

“We now have chipped paint and windscreen damage to our brand new car,” Anissa Rasmussen wrote.

“We were stopped by police at Tarzali, 10 kilometres from our destination, because cars were broken down, covered in tar, with it coating their wheels.”

Tablelands Regional Council Mayor Joe Paronella said a change of weather led to the chaos.

“I have never seen anything like it,” he said.

Cr Paronella said a section of the road was repaired by a Main Roads contractor a week ago. There were initial problems when gravel failed to stick to the bitumen.

“We started getting reports in the middle of last week from people getting stones and gravel flying up everywhere,” he said. “We helped with brooms to get the gravel off.”

That was during a period of cold, wet weather. But Deborah Stacey, from nearby Jaggan, told News Corp the problems really started when the weather improved on Wednesday and the bitumen turned to glue.

“We had a week of cracked windscreens, RACQ have been doing three to four a day,” she said.

“Then as soon as the sun came out, it started sticking … There was emulsion everywhere; a lot of soft tar sprayed in big globs and sticking to trucks wheels.”

Small towns, including Jaggan, were isolated while the main road was closed.

Cr Paronella urged those who had been caught up in the issues to contact Main Roads.

“I would certainly be talking to the department about possible compensation,” he said.

A spokesperson for Queensland’s Department of Transport and Main Roads said it was aware of the issues. The road had re-opened, with speed restrictions, after emergency repairs.

 Queensland’s Dept of Transport has advised motorists affected to submit claims.

Transport and Main Roads District Director Sandra Burke said about 60 motorists had so far contacted the department seeking compensation for damage caused to their vehicles.

‘The situation is completely unacceptable and I apologise on behalf of the department to all those people whose vehicles were damaged and travel plans disrupted by this extremely unusual event.

We became aware of an issue with about two kilometres of road surface on June 25 and immediately reduced the road speed from 80km/h to 60km/h, swept the road surface and put signs in place.

‘What occurred yesterday will be the subject of a departmental investigation in close consultation with the contractors. 

‘We believe recent cold and wet weather followed by a period of warmer conditions combined to destabilise the road surface which effectively became a sticky substance. “


Sandra Burke has missed a trick here though. It would be much cheaper to do what the clowns at the Metro have done, and blame it all on global warming!

  1. Sheri permalink
    July 8, 2018 1:17 pm

    ‘We believe recent cold and wet weather followed by a period of warmer conditions combined to destabilise the road surface which effectively became a sticky substance. “ Department of Transportation

    “Global Heatwave” The Fake Media

    Note the use of “global” to cover the reality that it’s WINTER iin Australia. At least the writer was smart enough to realize not everyone thinks there’s only a Northern Hemisphere (like Al Gore counts on).

    I realized immediately that if the road “melted” it’s due to poor road construction. Even in Arizona in the summer, they get squishy, not melted. The road will get hot enough to melt the bottoms of shoes, etc, but that’s normal. Any “melted” road is bad construction.

  2. quaesoveritas permalink
    July 8, 2018 1:34 pm

    Thanks, but how do we get this across to “the clowns at the Metro”?

    Of course the clowns at the Telegraph and BBC weren’t much better!

    • July 8, 2018 3:05 pm

      To be fair quaesoveritas; neither of these two links refer to Climate Change as a potential cause. After all it is winter in Australia just now; so they had to be careful.

  3. David Albert permalink
    July 8, 2018 2:12 pm

    There are many grades of asphalt cement and whole courses in route engineering on how to spec the correct AC for the zone and purpose of the project. You can’t use tack coat that works in Montana in Arizona as all asphalt is effected by temperatures. Choosing the fit that won’t “melt” in the summer and will still be flexible in the winter is the engineers job. My guess is the Queensland engineer got it wrong or the supplier got the wrong mix.

    • Graeme No.3 permalink
      July 8, 2018 10:18 pm

      David Albert:
      Agreed, wrong choice although possibly not the engineer.
      There are various grades of asphalt (as you say) and also how it is formulated. Anionic wetting agents are cheaper but more water sensitive and, as noted above, affected by rain before they ‘set’. I suspect some public service clerk or a hungry supplier chose the cheapest grade as “asphalt is asphalt”. Much as we have had ignorant people decided what sort of electricity generation method looks best to them.

    • Jeff permalink
      July 9, 2018 12:32 am

      The grade of material was standard, but it was applied during very wet conditions, the gravel did not adhere, was flung off by vehicles, leaving only bitumen, so when it heated up,
      the vehicles stuck.

      “The department said the tarmac was resurfaced last week by transport contractor COLAS Australia, but became damaged due to wet weather.
      District director Sandra Burke said the extreme hot temperatures that followed caused the surface to melt.
      “It’s a combination of factors,” she said.”

      “We started getting reports in the middle of last week from people getting stones and gravel flying up everywhere so we’ve been trying to assist Main Roads as much as possible, we helped with brooms to get the gravel off.
      “That was when we had cold weather and drizzle, since the weekend we’ve had the exact opposite and the bitumen, and the way I understand it, because there’s no gravel, it’s leading to vehicles galore with this massive amount of tar.”

  4. A C Osborn permalink
    July 8, 2018 3:42 pm

    I distinctly remember in the 60s & 70s summers having the Ashphalt at the edge of the road melting and getting it on both tyres and shoes.
    But that was where the Tar was bare of grit and really soaked up the heat of the sun.

    • Up2snuff permalink
      July 9, 2018 9:30 am

      Quite right which is why our roads in the UK are now rather more grey or silver in colour than the old black of the 1960s and 1970s. You do not see the heat haze ‘apparitions’ that were commonplace then but are not seen very often now.

      The early part of the drought period in April & May was like that in south-east England: dull-ish, continual cloud cover, slightly warm but without rain.

  5. Athelstan permalink
    July 8, 2018 3:48 pm

    ‘The Metro’ ?

    The Green lunacy has gone fundamental.

    /Oh Gawd, grant me the resource, the strength to remain calm, instill in me, the sobriety of reason and logic, that I may face, note and then rebut, such rampant human idiocy.

    “BRITAIN is not alone in experiencing a record-breaking heatwave”

    Only an utter moron could make such a sweeping statement of astonishing, totally unfounded nonsense.

    This coming new reality is not high on the political agenda. Climate change is a greater threat to the UK than EU directives, terrorism or a foreign power invading. Yet the scope of our political discussion on future threats is limited to Brexit and spending on defence. Instead of this blinkered view where the future is the same as the past, we need to step out of the intense heat and take a cool look at what we are doing to our home planet.

    The development of farming and rise of civilisations occurred within a 10,000-year window of unusually stable environmental conditions. Those stable interglacial conditions are over. Human actions are driving Earth to a hot new super-interglacial state. What scientists call the Anthropocene epoch, this unstable time, is a new chapter of history. Today’s heat is a forewarning of far worse to come. To live well in this new world needs political action to catch up with this changing reality. Fast.


    Two weeks of fairly warm and dry but unremarkable (geddit?) weather and the real dingbat nutters come out from their university belfrys.

    • mikewaite permalink
      July 8, 2018 8:18 pm

      I am sure that Guardian journalists earn a far higher salary than any scientists that I worked with. So why can they not lift a finger to determine the variation in temperature as determined by the international ice core project – GISP2- and run an Excel spreadsheet of the Holocene measurements freely provided on the GISP2 website . Alternatively just look them up on Wiki:
      and see a chart already prepared for us that shows the variations over the last 10 000 years give a lie to virtually everything that journalist wrote .

      • Athelstan permalink
        July 9, 2018 11:30 am

        Indeed so, but time and again, they (the gaun or NYT et al) get away with it because their audience is so accepting of the climate tosh and hyperbole and cunningly couched, made false statements, a little research is all it takes – that people are so incurious – totally baffles me.

        Having said that, Geology is my thing and meteorology and anything Geo’ has always and absolutely fascinated me.

  6. Broadlands permalink
    July 8, 2018 7:36 pm

    Sea surface temperatures at Cairns…

    • Athelstan permalink
      July 8, 2018 11:43 pm

      “Based on our historical data over a period of ten years, the warmest sea in this day in Cairns was 24°C/75°F, and the coldest 21°C/70°F.
      The swimming season in Cairns lasts from January to December, twelve months per year! During those months, Cairns water temperature does not drop below 20°C/68°F”

      No worries, and if the sharks don’t get yers there’s always the salties, or sea snakes, jelly fish and lots more besides!


  7. beowulf permalink
    July 9, 2018 12:08 am

    This is in north Queensland up on the Atherton Tablelands to the west of Cairns, in a cool/warm mountain rainforest area. The maximum temperature at nearby Mareeba Airport (much closer than Cairns down on the coast) on the day of the incident was 25 deg C. Not 54 deg C and not hot enough to melt anything. The local story was a beat-up by the ABC.

    • Jeff permalink
      July 9, 2018 12:38 am

      Look at the pictures, read the story, not a beat-up.

      • beowulf permalink
        July 9, 2018 6:07 am

        I read the story when it first happened here several days ago Jeff. I suggest you read it and read what I said with some improved comprehension skills.

        I quote the story: “District director Sandra Burke said the extreme hot temperatures that followed caused the surface to melt.”

        There were NO extreme hot temperatures Jeff. 25deg C max as recorded that day just down the road at Mareeba is perfectly normal for the area and to suggest otherwise is a TOTAL BEAT-UP Jeff. It was simply a case of non-existent heat being used as the excuse for a case of lousy road building.

      • Jeff permalink
        July 9, 2018 8:07 am

        The journalist was just quoting the district inspector.
        To me the story was informative and factual.
        Heat was not emphasised and I don’t think anyone reading it would think heat was the cause.

        “I have never seen anything like it and when the reports started coming through yesterday it was just incredible,” he said.

        “Last week a whole section of road was done by a Main Roads contractor and the gravel they put down on top did not adhere to the bitumen.

        “We started getting reports in the middle of last week from people getting stones and gravel flying up everywhere so we’ve been trying to assist Main Roads as much as possible, we helped with brooms to get the gravel off.

        “That was when we had cold weather and drizzle, since the weekend we’ve had the exact opposite and the bitumen, and the way I understand it, because there’s no gravel, it’s leading to vehicles galore with this massive amount of tar.”

      • beowulf permalink
        July 15, 2018 1:08 am

        You have some very selective reading skills there Jeff. “Heat was not emphasised”. What a load of shyte. I notice you leave out the multiple references to melting and heat in the article.

        The headline to your “factual” story as written by the journalists (not their source):

        “MELTING bitumen leaves motorists ‘sinking’ into Queensland road…”

        “We have EXTREME WEATHER conditions … unusually cold weather … and the short impact of the HOT WEATHER yesterday caused the situation to occur.”

        “A similar incident in Victoria made headlines around the world earlier this year, after the Hume Highway MELTED as the state was in the midst of a HEATWAVE.”

        “The tar MELTED today …”

        Yeah, the heat was not emphasised. What a joke. So that’s factual in your world is it?

        Nothing melted and nothing sank. It was incompetent road building blamed on heat. Get over it Jeff and stop trying to un-spin what the ABC journalists actually wrote.

  8. Up2snuff permalink
    July 9, 2018 9:21 am

    OK, they had some mid-twenty degree temps in northern Australia (isn’t that tropical? even in winter?) but what did the article say what was going on further south as far as the weather is concerned? Did they provide temps for South Australia or Tasmania?

  9. dosbrygos permalink
    July 10, 2018 6:48 am

    I have complained to IPSO (Independent Press Standards Organisation) on their website, siting the fact that the Metro article breached their accuracy clause. I will post their reply here. It is a relatively easy process so if you feel strongly, as I do, about blatantly inaccurate reporting on climate change then make your complaint. Go to:


  1. Media falsely claims roads melt In Australian ‘Winter Heatwave’ – Reality Check: ‘Due to a botched road repair job’ — – NZ Conservative Coalition

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