Townsville Bulletin - - FRONT PAGE - RACHEL RI­LEY

THE Ital­ian driver of a car that crashed south of Home Hill, killing three back­pack­ers and in­jur­ing another, has been charged with driv­ing with­out due care and at­ten­tion.

All five oc­cu­pants of the car were from Italy and were stay­ing in the Bur­dekin area work­ing as fruit and veg­etable pick­ers.

The sin­gle- ve­hi­cle crash oc­curred on Fri­day around 2pm on the Bruce High­way, about 4km south of Home Hill.

Townsville In­spec­tor Roger Whyte said the 25year- old driver was in­ter­viewed by po­lice on Satur­day.

Fam­ily mem­bers of all the vic­tims had been no­ti­fied.

“That was done im­me­di­ately, once we knew they were Ital­ian na­tion­als, through the Ital­ian con­sulate,” he said.

A ban­ner has been erected on the bal­cony of Home Hill Back­pack­ers, where it is be­lieved the group were stay­ing, in trib­ute to “Marco”, “Glo­ria” and “Giuseppe”.

Ini­tial po­lice in­ves­ti­ga­tions found the sta­tion wagon left the road and rolled af­ter hit­ting a con­crete bar­rier.

Three pas­sen­gers – a 29year- old woman, a 28- yearold man and a 23- year- old man – died at the scene. A fourth pas­sen­ger, a 26- yearold woman, was in­jured and she re­mains in a sta­ble con­di­tion at the Townsville Hos­pi­tal.

In­ves­ti­ga­tions into the crash con­tinue and the driver is due to ap­pear in the Ayr Mag­is­trates Court on Au­gust 12.

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