SYDNEY – Two women from Macau were killed and another from Macau was seriously injured following a collision between a car and a tourist bus in the state of Western Australia on Sunday, Xinhua and Australia’s state broadcaster ABC reported on Monday.
Officials from the Chinese Consulate General in Perth told Xinhua that the injured woman was in a stable condition and would remain in hospital for observation.
ABC reported that the woman, aged 23, was in a critical but stable condition in hospital.
According to the police, the crash occurred shortly before 2 p.m. local time on Sunday as the car in which the three women were travelling attempted to make a turn onto a remote stretch of a highway roughly 190 km north of the state capital of Perth.
The bus, which was carrying 34 passengers, collided with the women’s car, causing it to roll before it came to rest on its roof.
“The driver of the car died at the scene. The two passengers were conveyed to Royal Perth Hospital by [an] RAC rescue helicopter. One passenger has since died,” police said in a statement.
Notorious Indian Ocean Drive
Some of the passengers of the bus were treated at the scene for shock and minor injuries, Xinhua said.
The crash took place not far from the Pinnacles rock formations, on the notorious Indian Ocean Drive, which has seen several serious crashes since it opened in 2010, Xinhua and ABC pointed out.
Last year two Chinese tourists were killed when the bus they were travelling in was involved in a head-on collision with another vehicle. In 2017, three people, including a six-year-old boy were killed in a similar incident.
Representatives from the Chinese Consulate General in Perth have been in touch with local police in order to notify the families of those involved and provide support to the injured victim, Xinhua said.
According to Monday’s ABC report, the two vehicles collided on Ocean Drive in Nambung, at the turn-off to the world-famous Pinnacles rock formations. ABC quoted police as saying that the Nissan SUV, with the three tourists from Macau onboard, apparently turned from Pinnacles Drive onto Indian Ocean Drive, colliding with the Transwa bus.
“The collision caused the Nissan to roll, coming to rest on its roof,” a police spokesman told ABC.
According to ABC, one of the women in the car died at the scene, while the other two were flown to Royal Perth Hospital by the RAC (Royal Automobile Club) rescue helicopter. One of those women has since died.
ABC also said that St John Ambulance officers treated some of the bus passengers at the scene for minor injuries.
Western Australia Police Superintendent Domenic Wood was quoted by the ABC report as describing the accident as “a tragic and horrible crash”. He also said that “the driver and front seat passenger were the ones that I’ve been advised sadly passed away,” adding, “It’s a bad intersection…. And of course if you’re impacted from the side it’s always going to be a potentially serious or fatal crash, especially when you’re colliding with such as heavy vehicle.”
According to the Macau Post Daily, Wood also said as the deceased are Chinese nationals “it’s very important for us to now take care of their family next of kin and to make sure that all those appropriate notifications are taking place.”
ABC also quoted police as saying that inquiries into the crash were continuing. The Australian state broadcaster also pointed out that while Indian Ocean Drive is popular particularly with international tourists as a route to visit the Pinnacles natural rock formations, “it has been the scene of serious crashes since it opened in 2010, a number of which have been fatal.”