Friday, March 14, 2014

Elderly lady still made hairdressing appointment after mistaking tram track on bridge for road

A car being driven by elderly lady going to a hair appointment has become stuck on tram tracks on the Gold Coast in Australia. The 88-year-old woman, known to locals as 'Bobby' was on her way to her weekly blow dry appointment at a hairdressers in Southport on Wednesday morning. Police say she became disoriented and started driving down the tramline on the Sundale Bridge. For 60 metres she drove on an angle with one wheel on the raised tracks, the other on concrete one foot below. A GoldLinQ spokeswoman says the car crossed from the roadway to the tram tracks on the Southport Bridge at around 9am.

Trams are travelling the tracks as part of testing of the system but the spokeswoman says there was no tram on the line at the time of the incident. Salon owner Michael Cameron says he immediately knew it was his client on the bridge when she was late to her appointment. "Bobby is beautiful, Bobby is like just about everybody's nanna, she feels embarrassed but she's got a good sense of humour too, that will get her through it," he said. "The main thing is that she's very well, she will die of embarrassment, but I think she's a legend and will go down in history."

Witness Chris Bleymberg says the car crossed from traffic lanes on the bridge. "She was doing about 80 ks yeah, she was going pretty quick and her car just bounced through the air hit the side rail and I thought she was going to go off the edge," he said. "[She] hit the rail and bounced back onto the tracks and all the workers came up running and took her down to the bottom." Gold Coast Police Sergeant Bruce Pearce says the woman was shaken by the incident. "She became disorientated," he said.

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"Alcohol or anything wasn't a factor in this I think she just purely became disorientated and continued driving along the tracks." Sergeant Pearce says he is surprised she got so far. "I wouldn't describe it as an easy mistake," he said. "I would have thought there would have been enough factors there to stop, particularly after the drop in the bridge it would have been a little unusual." Police say they will interview the driver again but are unlikely to press charges. A crane had to be used to lift the car off the tracks, which have been slightly damaged. Bobby was assessed by paramedics and eventually made it to her hair appointment.

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