THE headache for Cunningham Hwy commuters and Ripley residents looks set to continue until at least November, with the end date for the Ripley Rd overpass put back another month.
An important link between Ipswich and Ripley, the overpass was completely closed in April so that work could begin on increasing the height of the bridge, which had been hit by oversize trucks on several occasions in the previous year.
The clearance height of the bridge will be increased from 5m to 5.4m.
When work started in April, the Department of Transport and Main Roads said the project would be finished in August, however the discovery of asbestos on the site brought unforeseen delays.
A licensed asbestos removal contractor was called in and the process was expected to only set the entire project back by two months.
Two months became three after the Queensland Times called the Department of Transport and Main Roads for an update yesterday.
A spokeswoman from the department said there had been no further problems since the asbestos was discovered that could be blamed for further delays.
"Refurbishment and rehabilitation was the most appropriate solution for the overpass because it minimised the impact on community, traffic and cost," she said.
Ipswich Councillor Sheila Ireland said the build-up of cars and semi-trailers trying to exit the Cunningham Hwy at Swanbank was more than just an inconvenience.
"It can be dangerous and one thing I have noticed is that some people are turning left onto Swanbank Rd and performing a U-turn - in an effort to beat the traffic," Cr Ireland said.
"I am very concerned for their safety."
Traffic is also much heavier on the alternative route to Ripley - Fischer Rd - where residents have complained about dust and noise.
The road now receives regular attention from a water truck to keep dust levels down.
The Department spokeswoman said there was no budget for the refurbishment due to the urgency of the job.
"Repair costs are ongoing. Once the project is complete, a total cost will be calculated and we will seek to recover the appropriate costs for the damage through insurance," she said.