'Not appreciated': Police hit back after gridlock complaints
POLICE co-ordinating the investigation into a fatal traffic accident at Minden at the weekend are furious after receiving several Triple-0 calls and complaints from motorists stuck in gridlock near the crash site.
Emergency services were forced to close the Warrego Hwy at the Minden crossroads for several hours on Saturday after a ute and sedan collided just before noon.
While diversions were put in place, some motorists found themselves stuck on the highway for more than three hours.
One of those motorists contacted the Queensland Times earlier this week to ask whether emergency services could have co-ordinated some kind of distribution of water to people stuck in the gridlock, after noticing several people suffering from heat exposure.
It appears some of the other motorists caught in traffic on Saturday went further than that, with police confirming several telephone calls were made from motorists requesting for lanes to be reopened so that they could get through.
Inspector Keith McDonald said it was disappointing that police had to put up with abusive calls from some people during what was a traumatic situation for those involved.
"What people don't always understand is that when you remove someone out of a car who is badly injured, it can take another 45 minutes to stabilise them enough so that they are ready to get into the chopper," Insp McDonald said.
"We did not appreciate people ringing up requesting water, or asking if we can open a lane so that they can get through.
"Our priority is looking after the injured and making sure other emergency services have a safe environment to work in."
At least one of those motorists caught up in the crash was able to show some initiative.
Police received correspondence from one Good Samaritan who walked to a nearby shop, purchased a slab of water bottles and handed them out to other people caught near the crash site.
The double fatality at Minden brought this year's Ipswich district road toll to 12 - eight fewer than at the same time last year.
Police are urging everyone to take care on the road over Christmas.
Police investigating a fatal traffic crash at Minden on December 9, are appealing for witnesses and have released images of vehicles that were in the area at the time.
The crash occurred at the intersection of the Warrego Highway and Lowood-Minden Rd about 11.45am.
The vehicles are a white tip truck towing earth moving equipment and a white van (similar to a Toyota Tarago) which were both travelling east on the highway.
A small white sedan adjacent to a fire truck and a dual cab utility towing a trailer at the stop sign on Lowood-Minden Rd. This vehicle had a green tarpaulin in the rear tray and the trailer appears to be similar to a landscaper's trailer.
Police believe the occupants of the vehicles may be able to assist with their inquiries and are appealing for those people to contact Policelink on 131444.