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Byron Shire
June 30, 2022

Car rolls on Coolamon Scenic Drive

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A man was hospitalised after this car rolled on Coolamon Scenic Drive late yesterday afternoon.
A man was hospitalised after this car rolled on Coolamon Scenic Drive late yesterday afternoon.

Coolamon Scenic Drive residents are pleading with drivers to slow down after a car rolled on the stretch between Coorabell and Mullumbimby yesterday afternoon.

Brian Reichman, who lives on the notorious stretch of road, said it was the fourth such accident in the space of a month on the Coolamon.

Mr Reichman told Echonetdaily he was alerted to the accident by a neighbour just after 5pm yesterday afternoon and ran down to see if he could be of assistance but discovered two ambulances, police and a fire engine already in attendance.

‘The male driver, who was trapped in the car, was eventually freed and taken to hospital,’ he said.

He added the man had been heading towards Mullumbimby when the accident occurred, just past the turn-off to Crystal Castle on a winding section of road.

‘He hit the last bend before the road straightens heading down towards the golf course and rolled,’ Mr Reichman said.

‘When I arrived 20–30 minutes after the accident I saw a dog in the car. The dog got out and was running around. It was then I saw an arm sticking out.’

Mr Reichman and his partner Irina Tennant have started a local letterboxing campaign and have collected 50 letters pleading with all levels of government to introduce proper speed controls on the narrow and winding stretch of road.

‘We’ve forwarded copies to Justine Elliot, Don Page and Simon Richardson. There is no speed limit and people have died on this road. It’s about time something was done. People regularly drive in excess of 100km/h and residents are seriously concerned,’ Mr Reichman said.

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  1. all backroads in the shire should be marked as 80km/h and windy stretches such as to road up to Montecollum and on to Goonengerry should be 60km/h. More important then this is for people to use common sense, stick tho their side of the road, don’t continuously run over double lines stop and pull off the road to do sight seeing and adjust their speed to the prevailing conditions, speed sign by themselves don’t work an in 15 years living in Coorabell I might have seen about 5 police cars. Yesterday morning while driving 80km/h an hour near the Possum Shoot turn off I was overtaken by someone doing well over 100km/h, today at the same time on the same spot I had to overtake someone doing below 60km/h, as I said before: use common sense people

  2. I was driving along that stretch of road yesterday taking my son to swimming lesson’s at 3:00pm and was travelling slow to the conditions and as it is a winding stretch of road. A white 4WD was tail gating me and then before we had reach the straight stretch of road at the base of the hill, the car behind me took over on a bend and nearly had a head on collision with a car coming the other direction. Is it really worth it? Killing yourself, or other people going about there every day lives-safely? Please introduce a safe speed limit for people who can’t calculate the risk themselves.

  3. I go down that road all the time from Bangalow. Drivers should drive to the road conditions. Simple as that. Take responsibility for your actions.

  4. I totally agree that all country roads should be restricted to 80k. Some years ago I wanted Myocum Road to be reduced to 80k as there are lots of hidden driveways, a dairy farm which has cattle on the road twice a day, not to mention lots of cattle on all the properties that sometimes stray onto the road.. Not a week goes by when you don’t see a car off the road and through someone’s fence. I wrote to the traffic committee at Byron Shire Council and was told that it was policy to have all country roads “drive according to the conditions” rather than reduce the speed limit. Unfortunately I think some drivers think that means they can drive at whatever speed they like.

  5. right on margot hays…you’ve all been brainwashed by the anti speed propaganda..congratulations..The Office of State Revenue applauds your naivety and thanks you all capriciously…FACT speed is a contributing factor in approx 4% of road accidents..and speed is a factor in 100% of all accidents..coz the vehicle was moving..doh. Run the volume of traffic against the accidents that occur and you;ll find the accidents that occur are what you would expect by chance. No one likes it its just a fact of life…MOST ppl drive to the conditions- [bad] driving (the actual reason the accidents occur) is condoned by the council the police and all the state (corporate) departments..They like it that way as they can make coin. Why let the facts get in the way of a good story..this anti speed argument has as its parallel the anti csg argument…funny that..lotsa emotion and fantasy but not a lotta reason…Argh well..dats da byron shire!!!

  6. As many respondents have already stated poor driving skills (like tailgating) and not driving to conditions has more to do what goes wrong than has this blind obsession with speed..Speed restrictions are a false comfort. They never slow down the stupid who have no intention of obeying them in the first instance. Sadly driving to conditions. and the use of common sense cannot be legislated. People keep saying that the government (local, state or federal) must do something and then bitch about government’s encroachment into every aspect of our lives. Take responsibility out there and stop expecting others to do. Understand that a motor vehicle is a lethal weapon and drive accordingly.

  7. Speed Is the main factor for accidents, although Bob might disagree, if you are driving at a safe speed for the road you are on, and taking into account when it rains the roads get slippery , there are concealed driveways, dogs, cattle and selfish people driving far to fast, and overtaking on blind corners and in the middle of the road, at least you might have a better chance of not being hurt as you would be more in control of your car and if possible could swerve to avoid them with out loosing control yourself. If more people were less selfish slowed down and were more considerate to others, there would be less accidents. As this is clearly not the case, there are ways of dealing with this madness. Lower speed limit, heavy fines, speed bumps on black spots etc etc. if people can not be intelligent enough to realise they are putting other people at risk through their thoughtlessness , they have to be told.h

  8. Margot, Bob, and Allen:


    1. Defensive driver training from an early age — mandatory.

    2. Periodic (perhaps five-yearly?) re-testing of drivers’ skills and road-rule knowledge.


    3. An attitude that a licence to drive is a privilege, with a privilege’s attendant responsibilities, rather than a primary civil right come some magical age of instant “maturity”.

    Too much nannying is at best unproductive in the medium to long term and, at worst, is utterly counterproductive. (It’s human to want to rebel, in all kinds of ways small and large.)

    People can “blame” governments for poor roads, inadequate signage, numerous other motoring-related shortcomings including mass-transit options – even for poor learner and driving-test regimen inadequacies; however, with or without Nanny’s intervention, it all comes down to personal judgment and responsibility – for our choices, actions, and their consequences.

    That “demon” Speed does not, on its own, kill road users. Inappropriate rapid stopping does that – such as when a small vehicle has a head-on with a larger one. “Inappropriate stopping” is too often the result of inattention, of a lack of defensive driving skills and attitude. They are far less frequently merely “bad luck”.

    Among our biggest road hazards are excessively timid, over-cautious drivers who create situations while they natter to their passengers and admire the scenery at 40km/h in a derestricted zone – and who panic-jab their brake pedals at every sighting of another vehicle.

    Most cases of such dangerously un-confident driving can be addressed by a proper defensive driving program. They cost a few dollars, but they can save lives. My life. Your life. What price life?

    As the signs sensibly advise: drive in a manner suited to the conditions (of weather, road surface and width, traffic, your vehicle, and your state of awareness / fatigue).

    Speed limits and signs will never deter those pathologically ineducable idiots who should never have been issued their licences, but the rest of us have no excuse.

    Get real. Take responsibility. Drive defensively.

    • We must also remember that it is “Coolamon SCENIC drive” and is advertised as such touristically which is all the more reason in my opinion an appropriate limit should be given to this road. For those who wish to get from a-b quickly should consider taking the highway in which they can travel safely between 100-120km per hour!

  9. I understand that speed limits and signs will not always deter the idiots but at the same time the issue with Coolamon Scenic Drive is that it is unlimited up to 100 kms. We live on the northern end of Coolamon and driving into mullumbimby our speedometer sits between 30-50 most of the way with some areas reaching 60 and only two small sections that are safe to reach 80 but by the time you get your speed to 80 you have to brake back down to 50. It is my feeling that a speed limit of 60km per hour is much more appropriate for the conditions of a narrow road with rough rocky edges, speed bumps, sharp corners and steep drop offs, not to mention driveways, houses, and especially children catching buses.

    At least with a limit the police can take more action. People don’t know how to drive to conditions they tend to assume the safety of a speed limit. Many of these accidents occur because people are driving an allowed speed limit on a road that cannot tolerate it.

    I fear for my children who catch the bus to school on this very road. They have to cross the road and as there is nowhere for them to stand on the side the bus picks them up on we make them wait on our side until the bus arrives and then they cross over. We have a blind corner and if they are crossing and a car comes around that corner at the allowed speed of 100km per hour it will kill them!


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