A double fatality involving two trucks west of Grafton closed the Gwydir Highway in both directions.
A double fatality involving two trucks west of Grafton closed the Gwydir Highway in both directions. Jarrard Potter

Double fatality in cattle truck head-on

UPDATE, 8AM TUESDAY: The Gwydir Highway has reopened after a fatal truck crash yesterday at Jackadgery.

The highway was operating under alternating (stop/slow) conditions.   These conditions have now been lifted and the clean-up operation has been completed.   There are no traffic delays in the area.   For the latest traffic information, visit www.livetraffic.com   

 

UPDATE, 7PM: Two people have died after a serious crash in Jackadgery near Grafton on Monday afternoon.

Just after 2.15pm on Monday January 15, emergency services were called to the Gwydir Highway, Jackadgery, 40km west of Grafton, following reports two trucks have collided head-on.

The male driver of a tipper truck, aged in his 50s, died at the scene; he has not yet been formally identified.

The male driver of a cattle truck also aged in his 50s, died at the scene; he has not yet been formally identified.

Officers from Coffs/Clarence Local Area Command attended and are investigating the circumstances surrounding the crash.

Local lands service personnel and a local vet attended the scene to euthanise the injured cattle.

A report will be prepared for information of the coroner.

UPDATE, 6PM: The Gwydir Highway is expected to remain closed for several more hours as emergency services attend a double fatality west of Grafton.

It is confirmed the drivers of both vehicles are deceased. One of the trucks was carrying a load of approximately 50 head of cattle, many of which have had to be euthanased. Some of the surviving cattle remain stuck on the truck, and others mustered into the paddock of a neighbouring farmer, who cut his fence down to assist.

Authorities said the highway will remain closed until at least 9.30pm, but predicted it will more likely be about midnight when the highway is finally reopened to the public.

There is a significant oil spill at the crash site as well as a lot of debris. Hazmat arrived at the scene at about 6pm with Clarence Valley Council also called to assist.

UPDATE, 4.30PM: Police have confirmed the two truck collision on the Gwydir Highway this afternoon is a double fatality.

According to Coffs Clarence Local Area Command duty officer Inspector Brendan Gorman it is understood both drivers are the deceased.

"Police and emergency services are at the scene of a crash between two heavy vehicles on the Gwydir Highway at the base of the Gibraltar Range," Insp Gorman said.

"It appears both drivers are deceased at this time.

"The Gwydir Highway is shut and police will investigate the accident. Anyone with any information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers or Grafton Police." 

A two truck crash west of Grafton has closed the Gwydir Highway in both directions.
A two truck crash west of Grafton has closed the Gwydir Highway in both directions. Bill North

 

UPDATE, 4PM: Motorists are advised to avoid using the Gwydir Highway after a serious crash involving two trucks just before 2.30pm about 40km west of Grafton.

Police, ambulance, fire and SES units as well as the Westpac Rescue Helicopter were all deployed to the scene at a remote section of the highway at Mulligan's Bluff west of Jackadgery.

It is understood at least one of the trucks was carrying a load of cattle and there are unconfirmed reports of a double fatality.

The Gwydir Highway is completely blocked in both directions while emergency services attend the scene. Motorists are advised to avoid the area and use an alternative route.

Diversions are in place with light vehicles are urged to follow the Armidale Rd south of Grafton and Guyra Road to the New England Highway. Heavy vehicles up to 19m should use the Bruxner Highway.

The current conditions are expected to remain unchanged for some time, according to Live Traffic NSW reports.  

ORIGINAL STORY,  2.45PM MONDAY: Emergency services have responded to reports of an overturned cattle truck near Jackadgery on the Gwydir Highway this afternoon.

Currently traffic is affected in both directions at the site of the incident, roughly 40km west of Grafton.

The Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter has been tasked to the scene.

Live Traffic NSW advises motorists to reduce speed and exercise caution.

MORE TO COME.



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