DNA sample to identify incinerated truck driver

By REN LANZONnewsroom@gladstoneobserver.com.au

GLADSTONE Police have taken a DNA sample to identify a driver incinerated when his semitrailer ploughed into an electrified rail line in the early hours of Saturday morning.

Sergeant John Caterson of Gladstone Police said investigations were being carried out into the cause of the fatal accident on the Bruce Highway about 60km north of Gladstone.

Sgt Caterson said tissue samples had been taken and were to be sent to Brisbane for DNA identification.

'We can't say positively who the driver was until we get the results back,' he said.

The accident happened about 2.30am. The semi-trailer, which was travelling north, ran off the Bruce Highway embankment near the town of Raglan where it collided with the electrified North Coast railway line and burst into flames, killing the driver.

It is believed the driver was the sole occupant of the vehicle which bore the name Tim Gee and Sons.

Yesterday a Queensland Rail spokesperson said two rail tracks of the railway line were affected, the first of which was repaired by 10.30am on Saturday and the second at 8pm the same day.

The spokesperson said repairs also had to be carried out on the electrified overhead wires.

The Saturday Tilt Train, scheduled to leave Rockhampton Station heading south at 7.30am, was affected by the accident. The spokesperson said QR arranged for coaches to pick up Tilt Train passengers at rail stations so that they could continue their journey.

About 18 coal and freight trains were also delayed by the accident.

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