FUTURE ASSURED: Pacifico is believed to be smoothing the road for affected highway workers after the abrupt collapse of KNF Construction.
FUTURE ASSURED: Pacifico is believed to be smoothing the road for affected highway workers after the abrupt collapse of KNF Construction.

Fresh hopes for highway workers after company collapse

THE future of 90 highway workers is understood to have been decided with a positive outcome after their livelihoods were thrown up in the air following KNF Construction's abrupt announcement it was going into administration.

The failed company - a subcontractor to principal contractor Pacifico, which is working on the Warrell Creek to Nambucca Heads Pacific Hwy upgrade - went into administration on March 15.

A worker revealed to the Advocate the staff employed by the company were informed at a recent meeting they would now be contracted with Pacifico and would continue working.

This has come as a relief to the employees, who were also told they would receive their wages from KNF Construction in about six months time.

The Ireland-based company is believed to have now gone into liquidation.

"We were getting paid fortnightly, now all the workers are super broke. The workers weren't too happy about it at all," the worker said.

"We went down there and had a meeting, and Pacifico have told us they're going to put us on their books now, which is good news."

Pacifico was approached for comment but all media inquires have been referred to the Roads and Maritime Services.

An RMS representative said the authority had been working with Pacifico to better understand the circumstances and consequences for KNF and its workers, and to progress the upgrade project.

Following news of the company's collapse, New South Wales Roads Minister Melinda Pavey expressed her deep concern for the future of the local construction workers.

"This is incredibly disappointing news for the workers and their families, most of whom come from my local area," the Member for Oxley said.

"My office has been in contact with Roads and Maritime Services to see what, if anything, can be done to ensure these workers are picked up by the principal contractor Pacifico and given ongoing work."

The $830-million Warrell Creek to Urunga Pacific Highway upgrade spans 20km and is jointly funded by the State and Federal governments.

The Warrell Creek to Urunga upgrade project is 62% finished, ahead of its expected completion later this year.


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