Two deaths, one vital question
TWO crashes, two dead, two injured, two straight stretches of road, but only one question: how did it happen?
Yesterday afternoon just south of Whiporie, and a couple of hours later on the Pacific Highway, bystanders were standing around shaking their heads as emergency personnel dealt with the carnage.
How did that Commodore cross suddenly into the path of that semi-trailer on the Summerland Way near Casino?
It was a question the 60-year-old Casino truck driver asked the first people on the scene after his truck loaded with sawdust collided with a car driving on his side of the road.
“He was conscious. He said the car just swerved into the path of the truck,” a worker, who was one of the first on the scene, said.
The impact must have been spectacular.
For about 100m the road was covered in car and truck parts and the driver’s half of the car was torn off.
Police said the body of the driver, whose identity had not been revealed, was thrown several metres from the impact zone into long grass at the side of the road.
“We arrived on the scene around 1.30pm to 1.45pm and the car was still smoking,” one of the first on the scene said.
“It must have just happened. There was a lot more debris all over the road. We moved some of it because there were still cars coming through.
“We blocked off the traffic and waited for the authorities to come.”
NSW Ambulance District Inspector Richard Brown said the truck driver had chest injuries and some minor facial injuries, but believed the man was in a stable condition.
Police said the dead man may have come from Grafton, although the car was not registered in the city.
The road was closed in both directions for several hours.
About two hours later, two members of the Black Uhlans Motorcycle Club crashed on the Pacific Highway near Six Mile Lane.
Insp Brown, who was returning from the Whiporie accident, was one of the first people on the scene.
“One rider died at the scene and another has been taken to Coffs Harbour Hospital. He should be okay,” he said.
A truck driver who came upon the accident soon after it happened, said there were bikes and bodies strewn across the road.
He said they had overtaken his truck just a few kilometres back down the highway travelling at high speed.
But members of the club blamed the state of the road for the crash.
“Take a picture of the f****** potholes, that’s what caused it,” one rider said.