Craig Warhurst

Collision takes a young life

A HEAD on collision along a straight stretch of Bruce Highway at Glenwood claimed the life of a young woman yesterday.

Officer in Charge of the Wide Bay Forensic Crash Unit Sergeant Steve Webb said it appeared the woman was killed instantly in the crash about 9.20am.

The woman, believed to be in her 20s and from Hervey Bay, died from multiple injury trauma.

Sgt Webb said it appeared a Hyundai Sonata, carrying an elderly couple and their brother was travelling northbound and had crossed onto the wrong side of the road before colliding with the young woman's southbound Nissan Tiida.

The reason the vehicle crossed an unbroken white line is still unknown.

In the Hyundai, the elderly passengers were thrown upside down after the force of the collision caused their vehicle to roll, entrapping them.

The barely recognisable and crumpled wreck of the Nissan Tiida ended up to the left of the road in scrub after rolling several times.

Car parts, including bits of belt buckles, mirrors and broken glasswere, were strewn all over the crash scene 400m north of the Glenwood State School.

The Hyundai had just travelled into a section of highway that was speed limited at 100kmh and the Nissan was moving into a reduced speed zone of 60kmh due to road works.

Passers-by and witnesses managed to pull the elderly woman from the rear of the vehicle before emergency services arrived.

Queensland Fire and Rescue Service Acting Area Director for Gympie Lloyd Johnston, who was on scene, said fire crews from Gympie and Maryborough had attended and used hydraulic rescue equipment to release both the men still trapped in the Hyundai.

They were stabilised by ambulance officers from Gympie and Maryborough before one, 82, was flown to Royal Brisbane Hospital with severe head, chest and pelvis injuries by AGL Action Rescue Helicopter.

He remains in a serious but stable condition.

Gympie Ambulance Officer in Charge Wayne Sachs said the other two occupants were transported to Gympie Hospital with extensive bruising, lacerations and multiple fractures.

The elderly man taken to Gympie Hospital was urgently transported to Nambour Hospital about 4.30pm after developing complications relating to a chest injury and the elderly lady was also rushed to Nambour about 5pm.

A woman who was riding from the Gold Coast to Townsville after picking up a new motorbike stopped to help at the scene. She sat and comforted the elderly woman pulled from the Hyundai. Friends had told her not to ride all the way from the Gold Coast back home as it was too dangerous, she said.

Originally from Germany the woman, who had first aid training, said she just wanted to help out. “I thought it was sad that no one was there for the other lady, but she was already gone.”

Gympie Fire Fighter Bob Von Nida said the Gympie crew waited until the coroner was on scene before extracting the body of the deceased woman.

“It's a terrible situation and something we are a little used to in Gympie,” he said.

The stretch of highway where the crash occurred was littered with debris including glass shards, nuts and bolts from previous crashes.

Henry Nyburg whose son attends the Glenwood State School said a truck had nearly cleaned up two cars in the exact same spot the day before.

Mr Nyburg said the southbound truck just didn't slow down enough for the reduced speed zone ahead of road works. “It was an accident waiting to happen,” he said.

The highway was closed for two hours and traffic was diverted to Cooloola Coast Road.

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