Parents called for action to be taken to prevent more deaths on Mundoolun Connection Road at the Young Driver Education Night held in Canungra last month.
In a room packed with young drivers, several concerned parents questioned Senior Constable Tony Fishburn about the safety of the road, calling for traffic lights at the intersection and improved safety measures.
Toby Hall asked why the government hadn’t introduced measures to disable mobile phones when in a vehicle.
According to Queensland Government data website, there have been three fatal crashes on Mundoolun Connection Road in the past four years, with many more incidents requiring hospitalisation.
Marissa Phillips carried a photograph of her son Kai with her when she spoke to the room full of young drivers.
Kai was killed in a car crash on Mundoolun Connection Road in July 2022.
He had only had his P plates for three weeks.
Marissa said her son was a safe, cautious driver.
Originally from the United Kingdom, she said the number of road deaths in Australia was extremely high in comparison to the UK.
“Young drivers are twice as likely to die here as they are in the UK,” she said.
Kai’s best friend and his girlfriend attended the Young Driver Education Night and Marissa said the two 17 year olds had spoken as Kai’s funeral.
“My life will never be the same. I will never be carefree again. Even when I’m happy it will always be there,” she said.
The week before Kai was killed he had been worried after being tailgated by another vehicle on his way home.
Snr Constable Fishburn said in most accidents, speed and distraction were the most common causes.
“The average text take the driver’s eyes off the road for five seconds. In that time anything can happen,” he said.
Canungra Fire Captain, Stuart Spalding addressed the group, asking the young people to be mindful of the volume their music is played at while driving.
“Often in an emergency we can’t get past because people can’t hear the sirens. They eventually they see the lights and pull over suddenly. We would much prefer you slow down 10 to 15 kilometres and hour, pull over slightly to the left and let us overtake,” he said.
Former Canungra firefighter and parent of Jared Graham who was killed in a car crash, Norm Graham, said it is important for the community to be heard on this issue.
“We need people to lobby the government about this, to bring changes, to change the legislation and to make the roads safer,” said Norm.
“It’s been 19 years since I lost Jared and I still get up every morning with a tear in my eye.”