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English backpacker, 31, dies in a fiery crash in Australia

English backpacker, 31, dies as his car erupts into a fireball after colliding with a timber truck on a notorious Australian highway

  • A British backpacker is believed to be the victim who died in a horror crash
  • A truck carrying a full load of pine timber collided with a sedan on Bruce Hwy
  • Police are struggling to identify the body due to the condition of the remains
  • But they are certain the driver was a 31-year-old backpacker from England  

A British backpacker is believed to be the victim who died in a horror crash.

A truck carrying a full load of pine timber collided with a sedan on the Bruce Highway, south of Townsville at 5pm on Tuesday.

The timber caught fire at the scene due to the impact of the crash, making it difficult for emergency services to access the vehicles, 9News reported.

The driver of the sedan was declared dead at the scene. 

A truck carrying a full load of pine timber collided with a sedan on the Bruce Highway, south of Townsville at 5pm on Tuesday

A witness said ‘as soon as the car hit the front of the truck it exploded into a ball of flames. By then it was all over.’ 

Police are yet to identify the body due to the condition of the remains, but believe the driver was a 31-year-old backpacker from the UK. 


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They believe the man had borrowed the car from a fellow backpacker and was travelling from Airlie Beach to Ayr.

The highway was shut in both directions for hours as emergency services worked to clear debris. 

Police are yet to identify the body due to the condition of the remains, but believe the driver was a 31-year-old backpacker from the UK

The truck driver survived with non-life threatening injuries.

‘He was good to start with, but then half an hour later you could see what had happened was starting to take its toll on him,’ the witness said.

The notorious road strip was named in the worst 22 roads in the world in 2014, accounting for a fifth of the countries road toll, despite representing less than eight per cent of Australian highway.

While it has undergone upgrades to combat the reputation in the past four years, in 2018 it was still identified as the most concerning road in Queensland.

In August the highway made headlines after seven deaths occurred in seven days.

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