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Truck company raided after crash that killed two children

Taite (left), Kobi and Scout Van Der Heyden. Taite and Kobi died in the crash while Scout was airlifted to The Children's Hospital at Westmead in a serious condition.
Taite (left), Kobi and Scout Van Der Heyden. Taite and Kobi died in the crash while Scout was airlifted to The Children's Hospital at Westmead in a serious condition. Supplied

A TRUCKING firm involved in a horror highway crash that left two Queensland children dead was raided on Friday as police said the boys' father did everything possible to avoid the collision.

Twelve-year-old Taite Van Der Heyden and his nine-year-old brother Kobi from Gladstone died at the scene on the Newell Highway, north of Dubbo, when their parents' 4WD collided with a B-double truck in the early hours of last Saturday.

A third brother, Scout, 4, suffered internal injuries and was taken to Sydney's The Children's Hospital at Westmead in a serious condition.

Parents Jen and Jason, who friends have described as dedicated and loving parents, escaped with minor injuries and travelled to be with Scout that afternoon.

The driver of the Redstar Transport truck, also a Queenslander aged in his early 50s, suffered back injuries.

Authorities yesterday carried out early morning raids at Redstar Transport and uncovered several faults in its fleet.

Police arrived at Redstar sites in the western Sydney suburb of Yennora and Dubbo at 6am for an operation targeting heavy vehicles, with assistance from Roads and Maritime Services.

Taite Van Der Heyden, 12, Scout, 4, and Kobi, 9. Taite and Kobi died in the crash on the Newell Highway last Saturday. Scout was airlifted to The Children's Hospital at Westmead in a serious condition.
Taite Van Der Heyden, 12, Scout, 4, and Kobi, 9. Taite and Kobi died in the crash on the Newell Highway last Saturday. Scout was airlifted to The Children's Hospital at Westmead in a serious condition. Supplied

NSW Police Assistant Commissioner Michael Corboy said authorities would audit the entire Redstar fleet, consisting of about 160 prime-movers and up to 600 trailers, across all states.

After the first 50 checks, several issues including major load problems, defects with brakes and suspension and logbook falsification were uncovered.

"It's pretty disappointing," Mr Corboy said.

Action will be taken against the company once the audit is completed. The investigation into Saturday's shocking crash will look at whether the truck driver was fatigued.

Crash investigators are also looking at whether the collision was a side-swipe, the assistant commissioner said.

"The father of the family did everything he could to avoid the accident," Mr Corboy said.

The crash was so violent the accident site stretched more than 500 metres along the highway, with footage showing the white 4WD ripped in two on the side of the road.

Topics:  editors picks fatal crash gladstone road safety trucking

News Corp Australia

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