Tragedy en route Snowy Mountains – driver of car crash swerved to save an animal

  • July 29, 2019

L: Gopal Bhandari and R: Samikhsya Subedi, both friends passed away in a tragic road accident on Monaro Hwy near Cooma. Image: Facebook

Tragedy struck two Nepalese families early Sunday morning after a car rolled multiple times off Monaro Highway near Cooma. A source has been quoted telling The Canberra Times that ‘the driver of the car crash on Monaro Highway was said to have swerved the car to avoid hitting an animal which appeared on the highway’. Rishi Acharya, a community leader who has spoken to one of the survivors told the Canberra Times that ‘the driver saw a kangaroo or a rabbit and tried to avoid it’.

Police were suspecting ‘high speed’ and investigating if ‘fatigue’ played a role in the accident. The statement has shed a new light on the accident. However, investigations continue because ‘looking at the impact of the accident, high speed cannot be totally ruled out’.

Holiday turns into a tragedy:

Fifteen friends in three cars had left for the Snowy Mountains on Saturday. The group decided to camp along the way, and head to the mountains the next day. Samixa Subedi, one of the victims of the accident had shared a live story on her Facebook page on Saturday – in the video, the five friends are seen having fun, excited about their upcoming vacation, and playing ‘Anatkshiri’ – a popular car game while travelling on long routes.

All three cars camped near Canberra for the night. For reasons unknown, the car involved in the accident left the camp early morning – the other two cars left much later and were made aware of the accident only after they reached Snowy Mountains. Around 4 a.m.,  police reported to a distress call near the town of Cooma en route Snowy Mountains. They arrived to find a Mazda 6 completely wrecked. They recorded two fatalities and three injuries. The two fatalities have been identified as Samikshya Subedi, a 22 year old Sydney student and Gopal Bhandari, also in his twenties. Bhandari was seated in the front passenger seat and Ms. Subedi at the back. Ms. Subedi was ejected from the car during the course of the crash. According to the police, the car flipped multiple times and landed on its back, and the other three passengers are ‘lucky to be alive’.

The Nepalese Embassy in Canberra has informed the families of the deceased, and are in constant touch with them. According to the Embassy, Gopal was the only son of the family, and his family members are in a total state of shock. Samikshya Subedi was studying at Queensford College in Sydney.

The Nepalese community in Australia is shocked to learn the news of the accident, condolence messages have been pouring from friends on their social media pages. Her last post on Facebook was the ‘live video’ – one which has the community pondering upon the ‘uncertainty of life’. The five friends are seen laughing, talking, enjoying – one of the last memories of them to the world.