A long weekend road trip has ended in horror for a group of mates on the Fraser Coast in southern Queensland.
18-year-old Brody Smith was behind the wheel of his Nissan Navara, as part of a convoy of three 4WD utes, when he crashed into an oncoming timber truck early on Friday morning.
Police say the crash occurred at Tuan Forest on Maryborough Cooloola Road, towards Tin Can Bay, at around 6.40am.
Mr Smith, who was just weeks away from graduating, was trapped in the wreckage of his vehicle and died at the scene.
The only passenger in his green Nissan Navara was a 17-year-old boy from Torquay, who received non-life threatening injuries.
He was taken to Hervey Bay Hospital suffering from shock.
The 52-year-old truck driver from Glass House Mountains is lucky to be alive after his vehicle rolled, coming to a rest on its side before bursting into flames.
He managed to escape with only minor injuries.
Celebration turns to tragedy for teens
Just two weeks ago, Mr Smith and his friends from Fraser Coast Anglican College were celebrating their Year 12 formal at the Beach House Hotel.
Now tributes are pouring in for the student from Pialba who is being remembered as a “well respected” leader.
“Our deepest condolences are with Brody’s family and friends at this time and we hold them close in our thoughts and prayers,” Fraser Coast Anglican College Principal Joe Wright told the Courier Mail.
“Brody was a popular and well-respected student who has built many connections across the college through his leadership positions as Sports Captain, House Captain and coach.
“His passing will be felt deeply across all levels of our college community.”
Special counselling services will be available to students when they return from school holidays on Tuesday.
Long weekend warning
As holiday makers head off on long weekend trips, police have issued a desperate warning to motorists to take care.
“This is a tragic crash leading into the long weekend,” Inspector Paul Algie said.
“A family have now lost a son and a treasured member of the community.
“Leading into the long weekend, when a lot of people are on the roads, I implore all people in the area [to] slow down, avoid distractions, get to your location alive.
“One life lost on Queensland roads is too many.”
Forensic crash officers are investigating the fatality and are appealing for any who spotted the three 4WDs travelling from Hervey Bay to get in touch.
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