IT was a chilling sight on the Pacific Highway and had all the signs of yet more carnage.
While there was no horrific smash or loss of life this time, there was still plenty of destruction when fire swept through a car carrier at Halfway Creek.
Police say the damage bill from the early-morning inferno could reach as much as $200,000 as their investigations continue.
The 37-year-old driver of the Brisbane-bound prime mover and trailer – laden with four Holdens, two Mercedes and an Isuzu ute – pulled over just south of the truck stop for a toilet break at 2am yesterday.
He heard a loud bang and turned around to see the trailer on fire.
Police said the flames took hold near the rear axle and when no fire extinguisher was available, the truckie tried in vain to douse the flames with water.
He dropped the ramps so he could remove the vehicles but had no luck there either because he didn’t have their keys.
The fire quickly consumed the trailer and the driver worked quickly to un-hitch the prime mover and drive it out of the danger zone.
All but one of the cars was destroyed despite the best efforts of firefighters.