Semi driver charged following police pursuit

A 39-YEAR-OLD man has been charged following an alleged police chase involving a semi-trailer early this morning.  

Police will allege the man drove his heavy vehicle through Gympie on the wrong side of the highway at 12:40am Wednesday night before crashing at Miriam Vale in the early hours of Thursday morning.    

Gympie police were stationed on the Bruce Hwy just south of Gympie at 12.50am, when they allegedly saw the north-bound semi overtake another semi-trailer and come roaring towards them on the wrong side of the road, Gympie Sergeant Andrew Holding said.    

"It nearly ran the police car off the road," Sgt Holding said.     

Police pursued the truck that allegedly continued to fly through Gympie on the wrong side of the road, reportedly reaching speeds 20 kilometres over the limit, until it corrected itself near the Gympie golf course, the sergeant said.      

The driver refused to stop on police command, Sgt Holding said and police forfeited the chase at Two Mile State School due to the speed of the truck and the dangerous manner of driving.     

Ultimately they terminated the pursuit due to public safety concerns.  

Almost three hours later the truck rolled over on the Bruce Hwy, 25km south of Miriam Vale at 3.30am, blocking both lanes of the highway between Granite Creek and Collosseum Creek.    

Paramedics on the scene treated one man for cuts to his leg, but he was in a stable condition and declined transport to hospital, while firefighters worked to clean a diesel leak.     

A driver was taken into custody and has been charged with three counts of dangerous operation of a motor vehicle and one count of fail to stop motor vehicle  

Traffic was still blocked in both directions as police investigated the scene Thursday morning at 7am, the Statewide Traffic Management confirmed.    

He is due to appear in Gympie Magistrates Court on April 16.

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