Outback crash survivors return home

TWO survivors of an outback crash that claimed the life of a Mount Clear man are back in Ballarat.

Brian Gadd, 33, was found dead in a waterhole about 130 kilometres from Broken Hill after the car in which he was travelling left the road on Tuesday.

A 21-year-old man and a 24-year-old woman – both from Ballarat – survived the crash and were later found alive.

A spokesman for the Broken Hill Base Hospital said the pair was admitted on Wednesday afternoon in a stable condition and released later that day.

Barrier Local Area Commander Superintendent Brad Hodder said he believed the two survivors had now returned to Ballarat.

They have not been interviewed by police and their names will not be released to the public.

“We’re still yet to make those inquiries,” Superintendent Hodder said.

“They were very traumatised after the ordeal, so once they’ve had time to calm down we will speak to them.”

Superintendent Hodder refused to speculate on whether metropolitan media reports suggesting drugs were involved in the incident were accurate.

“I don’t know where those reports are coming from,” he said.

“That will be a matter for the coroner to determine.”

About noon on Tuesday, emergency services received a call from a woman stating she was lost about an hour’s drive from Broken Hill.

Emergency crews traced data from the call and, using GPS co-ordinates, determined it was made near the Mutawintji National Park – about 130 kilometres north-east of Broken Hill.

Rescue crews were able to get to the car by land around 8pm on Tuesday, but the missing people were not there.

About 9.40am on Wednesday the woman arrived on foot at Acacia Downs station, about 72 kilometres north-east of Broken Hill. She appeared in reasonable health, informing police she had left two men at a waterhole.

Police resumed their search, locating the two men at separate locations on Wednesday afternoon.

The younger man was suffering from exposure and treated by NSW Ambulance paramedics for minor injuries and heat exposure.

Mr Gadd was found soon after in the waterhole, about a kilometre from the car.

jordan.oliver@thecourier.com.au

Smartphone
Tablet - Narrow
Tablet - Wide
Desktop