Quick action saves driver from inferno
THE driver of a B-double was dragged from his overturned truck moments before it burst into flames after a crash at Newrybar yesterday.
Witnesses said the truck was travelling south along the Pacific Highway about 4pm when it appeared to clip the front of a car that was edging on to the highway from Broken Head Road.
Witnesses said the B-double swerved into northbound traffic, clipping another vehicle before flipping on to its side.
Police were not able to confirm the witnesses' accounts.
Newrybar resident Dougie Lake said he heard a loud explosion when the truck flipped, and then walked to the roadside moments after the incident.
“I talked to two people who cracked the windscreen to get the driver out,” he said.
Mr Lake said the pair was in a car behind the truck and stopped to help the driver.
“They must have done it just in time because I came straight down here and the fire was really raging,” he said.
Ambulance and fire crews soon arrived on the scene and the B-double driver was treated by paramedics. He was then taken in the Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter to Lismore Base Hospital and was last night in a stable condition.
Police said they expected the accident would keep the Pacific Highway closed to northbound traffic between Knockrow and Newrybar overnight while the two burnt-out trailers were removed.
Truck driver Andrew McCallum, who was stopped about 100 metres from the crash site, said he felt sorry for the driver of the B-double who would have lost about $400,000 worth of equipment.