9 February 2021

‘50 cars in 15 minutes': Passing motorists ignore woman calling for help over fatal crash near Batemans Bay

| Albert McKnight
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The crashed Prius

A woman has died after her car crashed down an embankment at Currowan on Sunday. Photo: South Coast Police District Facebook.

For about 15 minutes, a woman was ignored while trying to flag down passing motorists to get help for what would become a fatal crash outside Batemans Bay.

NSW Police said around midday on Sunday (31 January), a 68-year-old woman was travelling east on the Kings Highway at Currowan when her Toyota Prius crashed 12 metres down an embankment.

Police said the woman was treated at the scene before being airlifted to Canberra Hospital with serious injuries, but died in hospital today (1 February).

The tragedy was compounded when passing motorists ignored a nearby resident who discovered the woman in her crashed car. The crash site is in a mobile blackspot, and she was trying to get their assistance to call for help from emergency services.

READ MORE ‘People are dying’: Fatal crash reignites calls to fix Clyde Mountain mobile black spot

Currowan resident Darrell Bossley, whose driveway is about 200 metres from the crash site, said he and his wife Lisa were at home with a friend on the day when they heard a crashing sound, so his wife went to investigate.

After a while, she still hadn’t returned, and he was preparing to find her when a stranger drove down their driveway saying Ms Bossley had sent him to call for help.

Mr Bossley and his friend went to assist, finding the crash site where Ms Bossley held the barely conscious injured woman’s hand and was trying to reassure her.

The car had crashed down a gully and couldn’t be seen from the road. Mr Bossley said his wife had struggled to find help from passing motorists, with about 50 cars passing her in 15 minutes despite being on the road with her car’s hazard lights on.

“She said she was standing on the middle of the road, trying to flag people down and they went around her,” he said.

“In the end, she got on her knees and they still ignored her.

“This lady needed medical attention, she needed it now and no-one would stop.”

The crash site

A woman has died after her car crashed down an embankment at Currowan on Sunday. Photo: South Coast Police District Facebook page

Mr Bossley said the woman had ACT registration plates and had told his wife she was travelling to see her children in Batemans Bay.

Owning the only property on the highway in the region, which is also in a mobile phone blackspot, the Bossleys have seen numerous crashes over the years. They have had many people come to their doors seeking help over a crashed vehicle.

“If it’s a rainy Friday afternoon you can nearly put a box of chocolates on it that there’s going to be a crash,” Mr Bossley said.

“This crash upset my wife more because she had to wait, and then waiting through people’s non-concern really upset her.

“When 50 cars go past a woman by herself on the highway, pleading, and just going around her, that’s pretty sad. That is horrible.”

While he has seen many crashes on the Kings Highway, he said in his opinion the road itself was of good quality, but he recommended motorists, in general, should slow down.

“Drive responsibly and have a bit more compassion for other people,” he said.

“If you see someone broken down or in trouble, stop.”

Mr Bossley thanked the paramedics and police who attended the scene on Sunday, saying they had done good work.

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Police prefer to work with qualified paid security guards, like those in shopping malls as good Samaritans

Those people who drove past should be ashamed. It could be their loved ones

It’s sad that no one was able to realise the significance of the situation, though depending on the situation, I’d admittedly probably think twice about stopping if I was unaware of the situation because of dangerous hitchhikers, people unfairly trying to take advantage or mentally disturbed people that could also be dangerous.

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