UPDATE 12.45PM: The screech of brakes before a loud smash awoke residents near the stretch of road where a 41-year-old Coast man lost his life overnight.
Peachester Rd resident of 23 years Charlie Tom said the noise made him think a car might have crashed into a stray cow on the road.
"I said to the wife, 'someone's hit something very hard'," Mr Tom said.
A light blue/silver Ford Falcon station wagon had crashed into a tree beside the road in front of Mr Tom's house.
He did not leave his home but could see people had rushed to the scene.
Another nearby resident, who did not want to be named, said the crash also woke him and his wife.
He said a passerby had stopped to help.
Another neighbour used his vehicle's flashing lights to try to alert other motorists to the crash scene.
The witness said the driver had been thrown from his car and had died by the time the first person got to him.
"The gearbox and motor were on the other side of the road," he said.
"They had cleared the road."
He said firefighters searched nearby scrub to ensure no one else had been thrown from the station wagon.
Beerwah police officer-in-charge Senior Sergeant Kim Cavell said only one person was in the car when it crashed.
Snr Sgt Cavell said it appeared the driver had failed to negotiate a right-hand bend and hit a tree with "a great deal of force".
She asked motorists to take care on the roads.
Police are calling on any crash witnesses or anybody who might have seen the station wagon driving before the crash to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
7.30AM: Witnesses at a horror fatal crash on the Sunshine Coast have described the scene of devastation that confronted emergency services.
A 41-year-old Peachester man died at the scene of the crash, which occurred on Peachester Rd, Beerwah about 12.30am.
Mike Clayton from Clayton's Towing's crew recovered the vehicle.
"The vehicle was torn apart after hitting a tree, with the motor coming out and landing 20 metres away from the car," he said.
"Front suspension was torn out, it was a real devastating impact"
5.30AM: A 41-year-old man is dead after his car struck a tree just after midnight.
Police say the driver was on Peachester Rd near Beerwah, heading west, when his Ford Falcon wagon "left the roadway and struck a tree around 12.30am".
The Peachester man was pronounced dead at the scene.
The Forensic Crash Unit is investigating.