Police beg drivers to obey rules as road toll spirals out
WOULD you be horrified if 10 people were murdered in the Wide Bay Burnett in less than six weeks?
Dramatic, perhaps, but nevertheless 10 lives have been lost on the district's roads in the past six weeks, the murderer being people's choices.
So why isn't the community in uproar?
This is the question that has stumped local police, in particular Wide Bay Burnett Police Superintendent Mark Stiles.
"What's it going to take to stop lives being lost?" Supt Stiles said.
Supt Stiles' desperate plea came a day after two people were killed at Agnes Water following a single-vehicle crash.
A Queensland Police spokesperson said the driver, an 18-year-old man and his 20-year-old passenger, both from Toowoomba, were pronounced dead at the scene.
Not long after his plea, made while eight people had died on our roads in six weeks, another two were added to the heartbreaking toll following a double fatal at Childers.
The crash brought the road toll tally in the NewsMail readership area to 16, and comes less than two weeks after Bundaberg man Alan Purdy died in a motorcycle crash at Cordalba.
"People have to accept that these are not accidents - they are crashes," Supt Stiles said.
"Someone makes a decision and there is a collision."
In the past six weeks, categorised by Wide Bay Burnett police patrol groups, five fatal crashes have happened in Gympie, one in Maryborough and two in the Bundaberg Patrol Group.
"All of these people work with someone," he said.
"They need to understand that someone made a poor choice and died for it."
Supt Stiles said officers launched the month-long Operation Mike Invent, targeting the Fatal 5 - drink driving, speed, fatigue, seatbelts and inattention.
"These aren't kids dying - they are responsible adults," he said.
"You've got to understand this is about your choices.
Supt Stiles said if as many people had been murdered in the same time frame, there would be an uproar.
He said the mentality of "it won't happen to me" needed to be quashed.
"People are making the wrong choices," he said.
"Those eight people who died, I don't think they thought it was going to happen to them, either."