A driver who ploughed into families at a busy beer garden, killing five people, slumped behind the wheel as his ‘eyes glazed over’ and appeared to be going through a medical episode when the accident occurred.
Police said the driver, age 66 and from Mt Macedon, does not have a criminal record aside from some speeding tickets.
The tragedy claimed the lives of two men in their 30s, a woman in her 40s, a teenage girl, and a six-year-old boy and took place out the front of the historic Royal Hotel at Daylesford, northwest of Melbourne, at 6.05pm on Sunday.
Witnesses say the white BMW X5 was coming down a hill on Albert Street when the driver suddenly accelerated ‘like a rocket’, mounted the curb and slammed into picnic tables out the front of the pub.
The hotel was heaving with guests due to the unofficial long weekend before Tuesday’s Melbourne Cup public holiday, with families gathering near an ice cream shop set up on the lawn.
The BMW then veered towards the road, barrelled into a lamp post, and finally came to a stop at a roundabout a few metres away from the hotel, on Howe Street.
Two men, aged 43 and 38, a 35-year-old woman, and an 11-month old boy were injured in the crash and are believed to be in stable conditions.
Pictured: A graphic showing how the Daylesford car crash on Sunday unfolded
The white BMW X5 (pictured) ploughed into patrons seated in the courtyard of the historic Royal Hotel at Daylesford
Witnesses said the badly-damaged BMW remained on the scene as emergency services arrived
The driver did not drugs or alcohol in his system at the time, and has a full and unrestricted licence.
One woman told Daily Mail Australia the driver appeared to have had a medical episode behind the wheel.
‘Not like he was drugged but had some kind of attack,’ she explained, suggesting it could have been diabetes.
The witness said: ‘It was just an explosion. There were bodies everywhere.’
Other witnesses said the driver appeared to be struggling in his vehicle just moments before he hit the accelerator and raced down a steep hill into the beer garden.
Victoria Police says it is still investigating the exact cause of the crash.
The man was later seen being placed on a drip and was among the last to be taken away to hospital.
‘I just saw a family on the ground and I wanted to kill him,’ the woman said. ‘He’s wiped out a whole family I reckon. I saw the little boy and it just broke my heart.’
Forensic teams remain at the scene, with a fallen power pole still blocking traffic (pictured)
The out-of-control white BMW X5, driven by a a 66-year-old man from Mt Macedon, ploughed into patrons seated in the courtyard (scene pictured)
A police officer could be seen removing a pram from the scene on Monday (pictured)
On Monday, police said the victims belonged to two families that knew each other and were not locals, but visitors who were ‘just going about their everyday life… on a beautiful sunny afternoon’.
Paramedics flew four patients to Melbourne for treatment, including one child.
The child was flown to the Royal Children’s Hospital in a serious but stable condition.
Two adults were flown to Royal Melbourne Hospital and one adult was flown to the Alfred Hospital, all with serious injuries.
Paramedics also took two patients to Ballarat and one patient to Royal Melbourne, in serious but stable conditions.
Victoria Police confirmed the crash on social media on Sunday evening.
‘Emergency services are currently at the scene of a fatal crash in Daylesford,’ a police statement said.
The pub at the historic Royal Hotel at Daylesford will remain closed until Thursday.
Community members gathered on Monday to pay tribute to the five people who died in Daylesford on Sunday (pictured)
Source: | This article originally belongs to Dailymail.co.uk