Road death toll surges during tragic Christmas week
A TRAGIC Christmas week on Queensland's roads has seen the state's road toll soar to 269 - 50 more deaths than last year's total - with one of the high-risk periods still to come.
The festive season was marred by tragedy, with seven lives lost on Queensland roads in the week leading up to Christmas Day.
It comes after the RACQ raised concerns about a road toll spike in the notorious holiday period.
On Friday, a fatal single vehicle crash near Innisfail, south of Cairns, claimed the life of a 28-year-old man. He was driving on the Palmerston Highway about 7am with three women when his Holden collided with a power pole. His passengers were uninjured.
Another young life was lost on Christmas Eve when a 21-year-old man's ute left the road and rolled at Broughton near Charters Towers.
On December 23, a 27-year-old Caboolture man was lying on Bribie Island Rd at Ningi when he was hit and killed by a passing car at about 10pm.
The night before, a young family was left "broken" when three-year-old Luna Matenga succumbed to her injuries two days after she was hit by a car at Ormeau on the Gold Coast.
On the afternoon of December 21, a 61-year-old Ayr man died when his car drifted onto the wrong side of the road and into the path of an oncoming truck near Mount Surround. The truck driver was taken to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
On December 19, a head-on collision between two dirt bikes in Cairns' south took the lives of a 28-year-old man and his 17-year-old passenger.
The same accident left another 21-year-old man in a serious condition.
The RACQ earlier this month warned motorists of the risks of drink or drug driving and urged everyone to plan their trips carefully in the "high-risk period" between Christmas and the new year.
So far, 269 people have died on Queensland's roads in 2020, compared with 219 who died in all of 2019.
"These are not just numbers - they are people who have died and it has a devastating ripple effect on their family, friends and their community," RACQ spokeswoman Clare Hunter said.
"Get enough rest and take a break every two hours, buckle up, put away distractions like phones, and don't speed or get behind the wheel if you've had too many drinks or are affected by drugs."
Originally published as Road death toll surges during tragic Christmas week