BIG LOSS: Adam Plooy, remembering his brother Jeremy, who died in a motorbike crash last month. INSET: Jeremy Plooy.
BIG LOSS: Adam Plooy, remembering his brother Jeremy, who died in a motorbike crash last month. INSET: Jeremy Plooy. Marc Stapelberg

Brother's plea for road caution after tragic crash

JEREMY Plooy made a real mark on his community.

The 39-year-old would help others ceaselessly, he'd walk the dogs of those who couldn't and he was a nurse in training.

He loved surfing and music and he had a cheeky side.

Jeremy was about 14 years old when his older brother, Adam, snuck him into his first live gig.

Aussie punk rockers The Hard Ons were on stage, and this sparked Jeremy's passion for drumming.

His generous soul was mourned by hundreds who gathered to remember his life at his brother's home last Friday, with officers from Ballina Police Station - where he worked as a cleaner - among the crowd.

Jeremy passed away on Monday, August 20, after his motorbike collided with a van at on the Bruxner Highway.

It was 4.30pm, at the highway's Ballina Rd intersection at Alstonville.

In light of the tragedy, Minister for Roads Melinda Pavey this week visited the region to announce action on the deadly site.

Ms Pavey said flashing light signage would soon be installed to "warn people of the dangerous intersection".

The State Government will then install a new eastbound turning lane for traffic entering Alstonville while medium and long-term solutions for the site will also be considered.

But Adam Plooy said it's not just the road; he's urged other drivers to be more cognisant of the motorcyclists they share the road with.

"Remember there's someone on that motorbike," Mr Plooy said.

"It's not just a bit of machinery."

Mr Plooy said it was "great" the State Government was looking at the site, but not much has changed since a similar fatal crash in 2016.

He stressed he was "not blaming the road" as many motorists navigated the junction without incident.

But a host of safety issues there, paired with drivers not seeing or not giving enough space to motorbikes, have proved a deadly combination.

Mr Plooy said his family, originally from Newcastle, were surf-obsessed and Jeremy spent much of his time saving up to travel to surfing destinations.

He had hoped a nursing career could help him to pursue that, while continuing to help people.

"A lot of his time was in the water," Mr Plooy said.

"He had been saving money to travel the world surfing and (with nursing) he could still help people and travel around."

The morning of the fatal incident, as Mr Plooy asked Jeremy to hit the surf with him, but he was too busy fixing someone's fence.

Mr Plooy urged people to remember how much his brother had given to the community, and honour his memory by being more aware of motorbikes.

"Just remember what he's done for you," he said.

"And just think that someone else on that motorbike that you pull out in front of will have to go through this same thing."



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