Third road death in four days has police frustrated.By Darren Linton
Police have expressed frustration after a third fatal crash in four days claimed the life of a 20-year-old Mulwala woman.
The woman was the sole occupant of a late model Nissan Dualis which left Murray Valley Hwy at Cobram East and collided head-on with a large gum tree about 8.40
For police in the Wangaratta service area it was a familiar and tragic scene.
‘‘She’s a local girl from Yarrawonga-Mulwala, so it will have a devastating effect on that local community,’’ Acting Superintendent David Ryan said.
‘‘This is now the third fatality we have had up here in the past four days, three separate incidents, three separate local people have lost their lives.’’
Acting Supt Ryan said police were out in force at the moment as part of Operation RAID, but he wondered if the road safety message was falling on deaf ears.
‘‘This is a very frustrating time for us, we as an organisation, the government, the local community has put an awful lot of time and effort into trying to drive home this road safety message and it seems to be lost on people,’’ he said.
‘‘Three separate crashes, circumstances very much the same, for no apparent reason these cars are leaving straight stretches of road .
Rescue volunteers from Cobram and across the border in Tocumwal spent more than 30 minutes cutting the victim from the wreckage.
Acting Supt Ryan said his officers have had to deal with repeat tragedies in recent days.
‘‘This has a lasting effect on each of those people, we have police members here who have been to all three fatal crashes over the past few days. Who knows the toll that that will take on them, especially into their Christmas period.’’
Acting Supt Ryan said although this situation was frustrating, police had no choice but to continue to push the road safety messages and to catch drivers doing the wrong things on the roads.
‘‘The message is quite clear, we are active, we are breath-testing, we are enforcing as much as we can. People doing the wrong thing, they will receive infringement notices, they will lose their licences, we make no apology for that because this sort of carnage has to stop,’’ he said.
‘‘You keep trying, you never give up.’’
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