The highway was closed for several hours after the crash.
The highway was closed for several hours after the crash.

Family hurt in horror crash

By ADAM WRATTEN and ZOE SINCLAIR

A MACKAY family of five is among those torn apart in a horrific three-car smash 80km south of Rockhampton yesterday.

Six people were hospitalised in the crash, with two of the four family members in a critical condition.

The family's four-wheel-drive and a red sedan were destroyed in the head-on collision on the Bruce High- way south of Mount Larcom about 10am. The driver of the third vehicle Nicole Pilcher, 23, said she slammed on the brakes as she tried to avoid the oncoming carnage.

Travelling behind the red sedan, Ms Pilcher said, her car came off the side of that vehicle before stopping alongside it.

While she escaped without injury, the driver of the sedan, a young Bunda- berg woman, suffered severe lower body injuries.?

She had to be cut from the wreckage and was airlifted to Gladstone and later Brisbane. "She had nowhere to go. She just hit (the four-wheel-drive),'' Ms Pilcher said of the accident.

Yesterday afternoon, surgeons operated on a 10-year-old Mackay boy's internal injuries at Rockhampton Hospital. His mother was also airlifted to the hospital with multiple fractures. Both were later flown to Brisbane.

Of the other family members, a grandfather was taken to Gladstone Hospital with suspected spinal injuries before being flown also to Brisbane, and the father had a broken leg. The daughter had minor injuries.

The Bruce Highway was closed for several hours after the accident, with traffic diverted through Gladstone. Ambulance, police and the RACQ Capricorn Helicopter Rescue Service attended.

Mount Larcom officer-in-charge Senior Constable Anissa Smith said she expected the worst when she arrived. "It was a terrible scene.



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