Iconic highway service station reopens dining room
AFTER Rusty's Service Station closed its dining room to the public, the team continued serving up hot meals to take away.
But truck drivers, needing a rest from driving long distances, were eager to stop to eat a meal, take a bathroom break and stretch.
Because of Federal Government restrictions, they - along with everyone else - were unable to.
Thanks to an exemption announced on March 30, drivers are now allowed access to essential amenities, including dine-in meals.
Food and beverage manager Peter McPhee said the truck drivers made up between a quarter and half of the station's customer base.
"We've received a lot of requests from truck drivers over the past week and a half and I think it finally got through to the government, so much so that they've made an exemption," Mr McPhee said.
"And it's fair enough because truck drivers are more essential than ever at the moment."
He said the team had to re-open the dining room slightly differently to how it used to be.
"When the first social distancing regulations came in, we had the tables 1.5 metres apart," Mr McPhee said.
"But this time, we've spread them 3m apart and we've only put one chair per table."
Now four single tables fill the room, instead of the usual 10.
The area is roped off and anyone dining in will be subject to an heavy vehicle license check.
"Just so we don't have people try to sit down who aren't truck drivers," Mr McPhee said.