TRAIL OF DESTRUCTION: A truck and car were involved in a fatal head-on collision at Mutdapilly about 500m after Champions Way, Willowbank yesterday.
TRAIL OF DESTRUCTION: A truck and car were involved in a fatal head-on collision at Mutdapilly about 500m after Champions Way, Willowbank yesterday. Sarah Harvey

Driver, 70, killed as sedan and semi-trailer collide

A MAN in his 70s died after the car he was driving apparently drifted on to the wrong side of the road into the path on a semi-trailer.

The man's Mazda sedan and a car carrier collided at Mutdapilly on the Cunningham Hwy 500m south of the intersection with Champion's Way at Willowbank, about 13km south-west of the Ipswich CBD.

Ipswich police inspector Keith McDonald said the head-on collision between the south-bound Mazda and a car carrier from Brisbane heading towards Ipswich happened about midday on Tuesday.

"Our enquiries are still in their early stages but it would appear that for reasons unknown the Mazda has drifted on to the north-bound lanes of the Cunningham Hwy and into the path of the semi-trailer," Insp McDonald said. "Our Forensic Crash Unit will be conducting investigations to ascertain why that vehicle may have drifted into the path of the semi-trailer."

He said the driver of the car had to be formally identified and the next of kin notified.

"It is a very sad day," he said.

"The warnings are out there for everybody - be mindful of other road users on the road, be alert at all times and unfortunately in this circumstance the truck driver has tried to do everything they could to avoid the collision but unfortunately he has been unable to avoid the collision with the Mazda.

"The truck driver is suffering from shock and has some minor injuries."

The car carrier came to rest against the guard rail and the mangled car ended up on the outside of a long, sweeping downhill right-hand bend on the edge of the road. Marking the road between the car and the truck were the truck's heavy tyre marks and debris from the collision.

The highway was blocked for several hours and the FCU was expected to stay until the evening.

Father Gerard O'Dempsey was in the house on The Ten Mile, a property nearby, when the crash happened. The parish priest at Plumpton - the Good Shepherd Parish near Rooty Hill, about 40km west of Sydney - is on holiday visiting his sister and her husband.

"I was about to have lunch and I heard what sounded like a huge explosion," Fr O'Dempsey said.

"When I came outside I saw the truck and the driver seemed to be searching for his phone. Army or air force personnel pulled up near the car and they must have called emergency services."



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