Car slams into two-vehicle crash on rural road
A WOMAN clutching her chest, screaming.
A man walking around, holding his collar bone, fearing the trouble he was in.
The front end of a car so badly damaged its make and model was unrecognisable.
A social media post has gone viral after a witness described a three-car pile up on a dark road in a small community west of Mackay in horrifying detail.
Jennifer Goostrey, an innocent bystander who was confronted with a horrifying scene, has recounted what she saw when two cars collided on Mackay Eungella Rd about 9.15pm Saturday.
Ms Goostrey was with her parents - who she had not seen for six months due to coronavirus - and friends, "sitting around the fire, talking and laughing" when she heard two cars race past the property towards Cattle Creek Bridge.
All she could see in the darkness was the lights but could make out enough too see one vehicle to overtake another.
Seconds later, "we heard screeching for so long, and then the loudest" bang.
One of the cars had collided head-on with a Toyota Prado, inside which was a man and his wife returning home to Finch Hatton from a family dinner.
"I jumped and ran as fast as I could, about 500 metres, to the cars, mum and dad following, calling the ambulance," she said.
"Running towards the crash, I didn't know what to expect; all I could hear was a lady screaming.
"I expected someone to be dead."
Queensland Ambulance paramedics responded to the three-vehicle crash, listing three people as suffering minor injuries in the collision.
The trio was taken to hospital.
Two of the patients were the husband and wife from the Prado.
In a viral post on Facebook, Miss Goostrey described the scene she was confronted with as she and her family went into action before emergency services arrived on scene.
The male driver of the Prado was helping his wife out of the vehicle, and both were in shock, Miss Goostrey said.
The woman was "holding her chest and screaming" but was clear of the Prado which was lying on its side across the road.
A young man from the second vehicle was out of the ute, mostly uninjured but worried about the trouble he was in.
Miss Goostrey spoke to him, and recalled he appeared confused about what had happened.
"I'm asking him, making sure there was no-one else in the cars as they were smoking and horns blaring," Miss Goostrey said.
A third car, not involved in the crash, was parked a little further away off the road and in the bush.
The driver was not injured.
The scene was almost under control when Miss Goostrey saw headlights coming over the bridge.
"I'm yelling at the other ute to flash his light and I'm standing on the road next to the Prado waving my arms so the car would stop," she said.
"When I realised it wasn't stopping, I had to jump out of the way because it was coming fast."
The oncoming car ploughed into the overturned Prado in the middle of the road.
"I was lucky I not to be hit; I felt debris fly past me and all I could think was, 'f*** mum and the couple are right there'," Miss Goostrey said.
She said two young men were inside, dazed and confused about what had happened.
"The passenger was lucky his head didn't go through the windscreen," she said.
"His head impacted on the windscreen, you could see the dent."
A GRATEFUL THANKS
JENNIFER Goostrey has been overwhelmed with the support and gratitude she has received since posting on her social media.
Among the many messages are those from the family of the man and woman inside the Prado involved in the crash.
"The husband and wife had been at a family dinner, and there was nothing they could have done to avoid the crash," Miss Goostrey said.
"If the crash had been 20 metres back, the ute probably would have ended up in the river and that's what we thought at first.
"So that was pretty lucky."
The crash scene still plays in Miss Goostrey's mind, and in her family's mind, about what actually happened and how close they came to serious injuries themselves.
Or what they could have found at the scene.
While Miss Goostrey would not change her actions that night, the message of thanks from the man and his wife, and their extended family, was welcome but unnecessary.
"Out here, everyone knows everyone," she said.
"Everyone is incredibly lucky to be alive.
"After the ambulance and police came, we called away back to the block in shock ourselves, and hugging one another a little longer before saying goodnight.
"Really makes you realise how quickly anyone's life can change.
"One minute you're driving home and next you're hit head-on. Or at a scene helping and could have been killed yourself."
Miss Goostrey has a simple, but poignant, message for drivers: "Be careful when travelling."
"It's not about what happened to us, it's about what could happen to you," she said.