UPDATE: Truck driver charged following dangerous pursuit
UPDATE: A Queensland man has been charged with a number of serious driving offences following an alleged police pursuit on Saturday night, which saw police chase a B-double, laden with an estimated-50 tonnes of freight, more than 70km.
Coffs/Clarence Police District duty officer Inspector Brendan Gorman said the driver, a 48-year-old from Nerang, had been released from Grafton Base Hospital on Sunday morning, where he spent the night.
Insp Gorman said the man had been charged with negligent driving, police pursuit (drive in a manner dangerous), reckless driving, use a vehicle as a weapon to prevent apprehension, not stop when directed by police, driver not wear seatbelt and resist arrest.
"Police are awaiting the result of blood samples before any further action is taken," Insp Gorman said.
The man has been bail refused to appear in Grafton Local Court on Monday.
EARLIER: A truck that had been noticed driving erratically as far south as Coffs Harbour has been arrested after he led police on a 70km-long chase after refusing to stop.
Coffs/Clarence Police District duty officer Acting Inspector Graham Hibbs said members of the public first reported the truck, which was laden with an estimated-50 tonnes of freight, driving erratically south of Coffs Harbour.
Officers attached to Coffs/Clarence Highway Patrol spotted the truck at Glenugie and attempted pull the vehicle over, however police allege the driver instead attempted to run the highway patrol vehicle off the road after a pursuit was initiated.
Highway Patrol officers followed the vehicle north along the highway to the Grafton township, where a caged police truck was positioned to stop southbound vehicles as a precaution.
During the pursuit the truck allegedly clipped the stationary police vehicle at South Grafton, and then continued north on the Pacific Highway.
After more than an hour, the truck was stopped on the Mororo Bridge, near Chatsworth Island, where it is alleged the driver resisted efforts to remove him from the cabin before being taken into custody.
A 48-year-old male from Nerang, Queensland, has been arrested, and was taken to Grafton Base Hospital under guard for mandatory testing, and due to concerns he was allegedly under the influence of illicit drugs.
He has been kept in hospital for observation due to concerns for his health.
A witness to the incident told The Daily Examiner the B-Double truck was allegedly weaving across the road with no headlights, and was taking sharp bends at Halfway Creek at high speed.
"Before the police chase, we were just waiting for him to crash," the witness said.
Inquiries are continuing.
Police are requesting that anyone who witnessed, or has dashcam vision of, the incident contact Grafton Police or Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.