Highway tragedy sparks call for change to road construction

CAMPAIGNER: Kirsty Moss is calling for a number of initiatives to help ensure driver safety after her brother’s death in a crash on the Bruce Hwy at Kybong in 2008.
CAMPAIGNER: Kirsty Moss is calling for a number of initiatives to help ensure driver safety after her brother’s death in a crash on the Bruce Hwy at Kybong in 2008. John Mccutcheon

KIRSTY Moss will never forget the moment her life changed forever.

It was a rainy Thursday and she received a phone call from her mother who told her that her brother had been involved in a fatal car crash.

The Cooroibah resident lost her brother Cory Whitmore, future sister-in-law Rachel Purdy and their unborn baby in a multiple-vehicle crash on the Bruce Hwy at Kybong that day on September 4, 2008.

"My life just stopped," Mrs Moss said. "I remember my mum's screams like no other. The piercing sound of sheer terror and devastation.

"I hate going back there in my thoughts to be honest.

"I wish for no one to ever go through this or receive that type of phone call.

"In one second our life and how we knew it had changed forever."

Mrs Moss said Cory often greeted his loved ones with a cheeky smile or a devious grin.

Renowned for his loving, caring, friendly, happy-go-lucky nature, the 29-year-old always had time for everyone. And it showed - his sister said anyone who met her brother was touched emotionally by his beautiful personality.

"He touched everyone in some way. Cory had such a unique and special personality - he had time for everyone," she said.

"He always took the time to stop and chat or call just to say that he loved them."

Mrs Moss said the crash that claimed the lives of her loved ones was a result of driver distraction and bad weather conditions.

She also said if there had been more room on the road for evasive action to be taken the crash may not have been fatal.

"There is no room for error," Mrs Moss said.

"Roads should be wider to give drivers space to move."

Mrs Moss, who owns Dusk Till Dawn Sleep Centre in Cooroy, has an extensive knowledge about the effects of fatigue and insists driving tired is the biggest killer on our roads.

"To me fatigue is more dangerous than anything on the road," she said.

"The fact you don't know who is coming towards you on the road and how long they have been driving, is horrifying."

Mrs Moss said there also needed to be stricter laws for offenders.

"I am seeing it all the time that drink drivers go three or four times before the courts and never end up in jail," she said. "They need to go to jail the first go - we should not just give them chance after chance.

"(The courts) need to crack down and be stricter."

Mrs Moss said coming down harder on offenders with steeper fines should also be looked into.

"It needs to hurt them some way because the people who are lost to crashes are hurting forever," she said.

"Coming from someone who has lost family members due to road trauma - I don't have any room for mistakes."

Topics:  bruce hwy editors picks fatal crash

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