Three people die in New South Wales, Australia car accidents

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Saturday, June 17, 2006

Both accidents occurred around the town of Blayney in NSW's central west

Police were kept busy around Blayney in New South Wales' central west this morning as two separate crashes on the Mid Western Highway claimed three lives. Both accidents occurred within 20 minutes of each other and were only seven kilometres (4 miles) apart.

The first accident occurred five kilometres North of Blayney towards Cowra at 7:45 a.m. AEST. A B-double truck carrying woodchips slammed into a parked table-top truck as it went around a corner. As a result of the crash, the B-double rolled over. The parked truck's passenger died at the scene, while its driver was airlifted to Orange Base Hospital suffering abdominal injuries.

A second accident occurred two kilometres south of Blayney, towards Bathurst. Both the driver and passenger died when their car left the road and collided with a tree. Police said they were investigating the crash and would prepare a report for the Coroner.

In a report released in 2004, the NRMA said that the government should give priority to upgrading the highway among others within the region. In 2005, the NRMA also expressed concern about the highway being reclassified as a regional road (from a state road), putting the onus for maintenance and improvements on councils, which already have limited resources.

According to a 2004 audit conducted by the NRMA, the Mid Western Highway is the fifth safest highway statistically in NSW with 18.7 major crashes per 100 million kilometres travelled and 11.5 fatalities per 100 million kilometres travelled. According to the NRMA, the most dangerous highway in NSW is the Great Western Highway, which has 51.5 crashes and 30.8 fatalities per 100 million kilometres travelled.

Upon closer examination of statistics, the safety record of the stretch between Bathurst and Cowra (which also happens to be the most heavily used) is comparable to that of the entire New England Highway and more dangerous than the Pacific Highway with 29.5 crashes and 15.6 fatalities per 100 million kilometres travelled. A 14-kilometre section between Bathurst and Blayney is particularly dangerous according to the NRMA.

Sources

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Wikinews
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.