By Luke Voogt
A death and dozens of injuries in a week on Geelong roads have prompted a safety call from TAC and police.
TAC road safety director Samantha Cockfield warned motorists to plan journeys, minimise distractions and slow down as the festive season approached.
“Christmas is traditionally a busy, high-risk time on our roads,” she said.
“The holiday season is about spending time with our loved ones and we do not accept that any family needs to face Christmas in grief because of a tragedy on our roads.”
Geelong Highway Patrol Senior Sergeant Gary Wilson echoed the call, urging drivers to avoid fatigued, drug and drink driving.
“Historically our peak trauma times are in the summer period,” he said.
“Any attendance at a traumatic scene has an impact on everybody – we’re members of the community as well.”
The call follows the death of a 63-year-old Ballarat man in a head-on crash at Connewarre on Tuesday.
A Hyundai sedan collided with a Holden sedan on Barwon Heads Rd at the Lower Duneed Road roundabout about 1.30pm.
The Hyundai driver died at the scene.
Paramedics took the male driver of the Holden to University Hospital Geelong in a stable condition with minor injuries.
Investigators had yet to establish the cause of the crash, a police spokesperson said.
Another head-on crash about 9am that day seriously injured two people.
Police alleged a man, in his 40s, was speeding along Weller Street after a disagreement with friends at a home nearby.
The man pulled out from behind a parked car and collided with a Ford Territory travelling the opposite way, police said.
His car “ricocheted” into another parked car due to the force of the crash, Leading Senior Constable Shane Dignan told 9News.
The man would face “serious charges” and police had “good CCTV footage” of the crash, Ld Sen Const Dignan said.
An ambulance helicopter flew him to Royal Melbourne Hospital with neck and chest injuries, while paramedics took a woman in her 40s to University Hospital Geelong with leg injuries.
Meanwhile, police charged a 21-year-old Grovedale man after a crash at Leopold on Saturday that left an elderly man with life-threatening injuries.
An ambulance helicopter flew the 77-year-old Leopold man to The Alfred, where he was recovering in a stable condition, a hospital spokesperson told the Indy on Wednesday.
Police charged the Grovedale man with dangerous driving causing serious injury, negligently causing serious injury and driving whilst disqualified.
In total 24 people presented to University Hospital Geelong’s emergency department since last Saturday in relation to road accidents.