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Ravenshoe cafe explosion inquest continues

The Four wheel drive that caused the explosion Supplied: Queensland Ambulance Service

In June 2015, 20 people were hospitalised after a Ute crashed into a busy café Ravenshoe, causing a gas explosion and fireball, killing mother of two Nicole Nyholt, 37, and Margaret Clark, 82.

A coronial inquest into the explosion is currently taking place in Atherton, where a witness told the inquest  that she saw the driver of “the utility smile and nod moments before he lost control and crashed into the building.”

It’s believed that Brian Scutt, was behind the wheel of his four-wheel-drive when he suffered a seizure and crashed into two gas bottles at the back of the Serves You Right Cafe at Ravenshoe.

The inquest is examining a range of factors, including whether Mr Scutt was fit to hold a driver’s licence and whether medical practitioners should be required by law to report to Queensland Transport if they believe a patient is unfit to drive.

Witness Veronica Featherstone — Mr Scutt’s friend of 20 years — told the court she was unaware of Mr Scutt’s medical condition.

She said he accidentally called her twice on the morning of the crash instead of his wife saying “I’m sick, I feel really sick, He sounded sick on the phone … he was flustered”

Both Mr Scutt and his GP, Kenneth Connolly, were due to give evidence at the inquest, but both men died in the past year.

The seven-day inquest was held in Atherton on Thursday and Friday and will continue in Cairns tomorrow.




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