More deaths will happen at Tyndale blackspot
CRASHES happen so often on the Pacific Highway at Tyndale that staff at Plantation Organic Bakery automatically grab the first aid kit and an umbrella or blanket as soon as they hear a bang and sirens.
After nine deaths over three years on that small stretch of highway, bakery owner Dave Lorenzo said with the number of cars on the road he believes that it's only a matter of time before the next fatal crash happens out the front of his store.
"The area is a fatigue zone, so unless you've got merging lanes you're going to have accidents all along here," he said.
"I don't think anything will stop the accidents, it's just a sign of the times. Traffic is increasing over the holiday period, and you're just going to get accidents.
"We were quite surprised it's been this long since another one really. I'm expecting another two before the holidays are over. It's a terrible thing to say, but it's the way people are."
A 12-year-old boy became the latest victim in a horror year on the Pacific Hwy after he died following a two-car collision at Wednesday.
About 4.20pm, a Mazda 6 sedan driven by a 17-year-old male, and a Hyundai Iload, driven by a 47-year-old man, crashed head-on near Sheehys Ln, in Tyndale.
The 12-year-old was airlifted to Grafton Base Hospital, however, died a short time later.
The driver of the Hyundai and three other occupants were all taken to Grafton Hospital with various, non-life threatening injuries.
The driver of the Mazda was the only occupant in that vehicle and was also taken to Grafton Hospital suffering leg injuries. He remains there in a stable condition.
Coffs/Clarence duty officer Inspector Jo Reid said officers from the Crash Investigation Unit were investigating the cause of the crash, with a report to be prepared for the Coroner.
There have now been three fatal crashes on the notorious stretch of highway at Tyndale in 2016, taking the year's road death toll to 15 for the Clarence Valley.
A recent study conducted by the Australian Road Assessment Program rates the Pacific Hwy from Grafton to Maclean as the most dangerous stretch of highway in the Clarence Valley.
Following a review of the road in 2014, the Roads and Maritime Services reduced the speed limit to 80kmh from 240m south of Coldstream Rd to 1.1km north of Sheehys Ln.
Bernice McFadden, relief managing the Plantation Motel at Tyndale, believes the speed limit could be reduced to 60kmh, and there still would be crashes.
"I still put it down to the same thing; that drivers don't care about anyone else, they just want to get from A to B as quick as possible," she said.
"I don't think it's the road. I can't see a problem with the road. I think it's bad behaviour and stupid driving, from what we've seen on the roads.
"I don't think (a lower speed limit) would make any difference, because people speed through here all the time."