Call for help: Teenagers found after chance connection

Chance mobile call alerted emergency services to Roma car accident


A chance mobile phone connection is what enabled the boys involved in Sunday's tragic car accident at Mount Abundance to alert emergency services to their urgent situation.


A chance mobile phone connection is what enabled the boys involved in Sunday's tragic car accident at Mount Abundance to alert emergency services to their urgent situation.

Roma police have confirmed that a triple 000 call made by one of the four boys involved was how people became aware the crash had occurred.

The accident took place at around 11.50am on Sunday when the Toyota Landcruiser wagon the boys were travelling in along a dirt track on private property on Binya Lane hit a ditch and rolled.

Two of the boys, 10-year-old Jack Cameron from Mount Abundance, and 16-year-old Archie Gouldson from Brisbane, died at the scene.

The other two boys, both aged 16, were transported to Roma Hospital with serious injuries and are now reported to be in a stable condition.

Detective sergeant Scott Jackson from the Major and Organised Crime Squad (Rural) said there was very poor phone reception at the accident site and it was only luck that a call had connected with the 000 operator.

He said emergency services had been unable to speak with the caller but through phone number tracing, were able to contact the boys' parents, who then found the boys at the accident scene.

Sergeant Jackson said that as a parent who lives on the land and who let his 14yo drive on the property, he understood what the families involved would now be going through.

"Our children are behind the wheel from an early age, and we often relax because they're at home," he said. "I have a really deep hurt for what those families are going through, as does the whole Roma community, and friends in Brisbane."

One of those offering her deepest sympathies was Warrego MP Ann Leahy, who said it had been a tragic loss of life, taken much too soon.

"The people involved are wonderful community people, involved in so much, our hearts go out to them," she said.

"Normally we would have the opportunity to grieve with them but that's being made so much more difficult by COVID.

"But that doesn't lessen our feelings for their loss."

Year 11 students at the Anglican Church Grammar School in Brisbane held a spontaneous gathering as a cohort when they returned to school on Monday to express their grief at the loss of their friend and schoolmate Archie Gouldson.

Investigations continue

Sergeant Jackson said investigations were continuing into how the accident happened.

"Whenever I conduct an investigation I study the reasons why people are travelling on the road and examine the fatal five - speed, seatbelts, fatigue, drugs and alcohol, and driver inattention - they are the predominant causes of accidents," he said.

"All factors will be looked at, the age of the driver and the conditions at the time too.

"The early indications are that the experience of the driver and the road conditions may have played a part."

He said the driver of the vehicle was known, and where each boy was sitting in the car, but they had not yet had the opportunity to interview the two injured boys.

"In the meantime, all the necessary forensics are taking place," he said.

Talking more about the shock and pain everyone was going through, Sergeant Jackson said one of the greatest responsibilities a parent had was to let their children develop without hovering, while one of their greatest responsibilities as a human was driving a motor vehicle.

"Some young people don't fathom until too late how what they do can change life," he said. "It's too early to understand what happened yet, but cars are powerful bits of machinery."


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