A 52-year-old man has been charged today (26 March 2020) after his Kia Rio ploughed head-on into a group of riders in Kyogle, northern NSW, killing one and injuring four others on Sunday, 20 October 2019.
The six riders were all part of the Sons Of The Southern Cross Social Motorcycle Club who were heading south out of Kyogle at the time.
One of the motorcycle riders, Wes “Pop” Carlton, 55, suffered critical injuries and sadly died at the scene.
Another rider, a 56-year-old man, suffered serious injuries and was taken to Lismore Base Hospital before being airlifted to Gold Coast University Hospital in a serious but stable condition.
The other two riders, aged 52 and 53, suffered serious injuries and were taken to Lismore Base Hospital for treatment.
The injured riders were named as “Smiley, Wellsy and Browny”.
Two more riding in the SOTSC group were not hit.
The driver and sole-occupant of the car, a 52-year-old man, was trapped for a short time before being released and taken to Lismore Hospital for treatment and mandatory testing.
Officers from Richmond Police District established a crime scene, which was examined by the Far North Coast Crash Investigations Unit.
Following extensive inquiries, the 52-year-old driver was arrested today (Thursday 26 March 2020) at his Warwick home in Queensland.
He was charged with dangerous driving occasioning death, three counts of dangerous driving occasioning grievous bodily harm, negligent driving occasioning death, negligent driving occasioning grievous bodily harm, and driver not keep left of centre dividing line.
His licence has been suspended and was set to face Kyogle Local Court on 10 June 2020, but that has now been moved to 29 July in Lismore Local Court.
Our sincere condolences to the families and friends of all riders killed and our best wishes for a full and speedy recovery for all those injured in these crashes.
Riders are vulnerable road users, but when they are riding in a group they present a bigger target and the results can be carnage.
We have reported on several group crashes in recent months in Australia.
Last week, two riders and a pillion were injured when two motorcycles collided head-on (pictured above) and in the other, two riders travelling the same direction collided and one rider crashed and sadly died.
But the most tragic was the crash in North America where an unlicensed pick-up truck driver ploughed into 10 bikes, killing seven riders.