29 May 2018

Canberra man dies after head-on crash on 'dangerous' road near Tumut

| Lachlan Roberts
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Gocup Road is a notorious 31-kilometre rural road near Tumut and Gundagai. Photo: NSW Government.

The driver who died after a head-on crash on a “dangerous” road near Tumut on Sunday morning has been revealed as a 67-year-old man from Canberra.

NSW Police said the 67-year-old Aranda man, who was driving a Toyota RAV4, died at the scene while his passenger, a 48-year-old Dickson man, was taken to Canberra Hospital in a serious condition.

The driver of the second vehicle was taken to Wagga Wagga Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

NSW Police said an investigation into the cause of the crash was ongoing.

Gocup Road is a 31-kilometre two-lane rural road from the Snowy Mountains Highway at Tumut to the Hume Highway at Gundagai, and has a high rate of accidents on its narrow lanes.

In 2012, the NSW Government committed $70 million over five years to upgrade Gocup Road, largely focusing on widening and strengthening the road.

Cootamundra-Gundagai Regional Council Mayor, Abb McAlister, said the road had tight corners and steep sections and a high number of heavy vehicles used it.

He labelled the road as “dangerous” due to increased traffic and said that the upgraded road works were “overdue.”

“The traffic flow over the last seven or eight years has really increased and there are more logging trucks using that road which makes it quite dangerous,” Mr McAlister said.

“The upgrades are really overdue and desperately needed, so it is unfortunate there has been another fatality.

“Where they are working now, they will put in overtaking lanes which will make a huge difference in traffic flow but there are still accidents on the road and it is due to the high volume of traffic and hopefully the improvements they are currently working on will accommodate that increase.

“It is a road that you still need to take it steady and it is still very narrow in places because with its terrain in the hills, they can’t make the roads too wide, but it is a great relief to see work being done.”

A $3 million project began in January to resurface and widen 5.1 kilometres of the road between Yarra and Smarts roads.

Police are urging anyone with information in relation to the accident to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page.

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It is of significant concern that it seems as many ACT residents have died in motor vehicle crashes over the border in NSW as have died in the ACT. While being tough on those close, is there any work being done on the causes? What do we know about serious injury rates?

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