THE city’s garbage trucks will be used as barriers to beef up security at Newcastle’s Anzac Day events and ward off vehicle-style attacks as part of an anti-terrorism measure, Newcastle City Council has confirmed.
The heavy vehicles will be used at several events on Monday and Tuesday, causing delays to waste collections throughout the week.
It comes after a state government directive to local councils that major events have strengthened security measures in the wake of overseas terrorist attacks.
The design, construction and weight of a garbage truck, which can be moved quickly if needed, makes it the best available security barrier, a Newcastle City Council council spokesman said.
“Council will make every effort to return the service to normal as quickly as possible and thanks residents in advance for their patience with Anzac Day commemorations,” the spokesman said.
It comes after Newcastle City Council instigated a similar measure in the build-up to Australia Day this year, with commuter buses barricading both ends of Honeysuckle Drive as crowds of people thronged to a concert on the harbour foreshore.
On that occasion the barricades were also monitored by security guards.
The measures prompted a dispute in January this year between Blue Mountains Council and the state government, with the council claiming it could not afford enhanced security for its Anzac Day commemorations, but the feud was later resolved.
The increased security is in response to the deadly attack in Berlin, where 19 people were killed by a truck at a Christmas market.
Eighty people were also killed by a truck in Nice, mowed down as they celebrated Bastille Day.