Death comes in many forms, but when it comes in untimely fashion as part of a freak accident, the results can be tragic. In this article, we list four of the many freak accidents that have happened in Australia to Australians over recent times, with deep condolences for the loved ones of those who passed away.
That life is fragile and can be taken away at any time is something we all accept on a theoretical level. Most of us deal with death as this truth of life that will ‘eventually’ come and get us, and when we imagine our deaths, we think of ourselves as old, having lived fully, surrounded by loved ones. This is why when freak accidents happen to someone we know, it shocks us and brings us back to reality that none of us can choose how we die.
Here are a few incidents that happened over recent times in Australia, and they still continue to haunt us.
Phillip Hughes, Australian Test batsman
In the summer of 2014, Phillip Hughes was batting for South Australia against New South Wales, and faced a bouncer from bowler Sean Abbott. He must have faced thousands of bouncers throughout his life. But this one reared to an awkward height, and as he turned away from the ball, it struck him on the back of the neck. Phillip collapsed on the pitch face first, and died a few hours later in hospital, having never regained consciousness. The cause of death was vertebral artery dissection, which is an incredibly rare case. Only a hundred of such cases are said to be reported in medical literature.
David Vinnicombe, Australian teen
A Queensland boy, David Vinnicombe was in Inuvik in July 2016 on a working vacation. Inuvik is a small town in Canada that touches the Arctic Ocean, and has a population of 3,265. He was working on a construction site, helping to build an access road for a new satellite in the area, when the heavy machinery he was operating rolled over him and killed him on the spot. Workmates were able to extricate his body, but by then the damage had already been done. A friend of the family back home in Queensland raised $25,000 to help with the costs of bringing back David’s body.
Accident at Dreamworld, Gold Coast
In October 2016, four people were killed due to a malfunction on a river rapids ride at Australia’s biggest theme park, Dreamworld. The malfunction caused two people to be ejected from the ride, and the other two were caught inside. While there have been other amusement park accidents like this around the world, this is the first time something like this has happened in Australia. The four dead ranged in age from early thirties to early forties.
Seven missing in Australia’s Outback
Unusual torrential rain in December 2016 in Australia’s outback has converted the Uluru monolith into a series of cascading waterfalls, and seven people went missing in the ensuing melee, including a Japanese tourist whose car was swept away, and an Australian family of six.