Retirees shocked by deadly tampering with their car
IT SHOULD'VE been a routine trip south for Boyne Valley retirees Kerry and Shirley Maddin but a stopover in Childers changed all that.
On March 15 they were told by mechanics at Gympie - 145km south of Childers - that all the wheel nuts on their Kia Sportage were loose.
Mr Maddin was shocked by the news.
"I was a little bit angry at first that someone has tampered with wheels but for what reason?" he said.
Mr and Mrs Maddin were driving to Brisbane for their daughter's wedding at Mount Glorious.
They noticed a slight knocking noise on a stretch of the Bruce Highway after having breakfast at the town.
But after pulling over and doing an initial check thought nothing of it.
The knocking got progressively worse 10km later so Mr Maddin made the call to pull into the Kia dealership at Gympie.
"We made the right decision even though we were desperate to get to our daughter's place," he said.
Mr Maddin said the car drove normally from their house to Childers.
"We came from (Nagoorin) all over a dirt road - got out on the bitumen to head to Gin Gin and there wasn't a noise at all," he said
The total cost, including car rental, repair, motel stay and fuel, was estimated to be about $500.
The couple posted their experience on Facebook where it garnered 97 comments and 238 reactions.
"(We were told) other people had the same problem," Mr Maddin said.
Crime prevention officer Senior Constable Wendy Brooks said there had been no reports about a similar trend in the Gladstone Region.
However, she had tips for drivers about to set off.
"It is highly recommended that all vehicles are maintained and in a roadworthy condition," Constable Brooks said.
"If you are planning on travelling a check of your tyres, engine and lights is a good start."
For Mr Maddin, he will now regularly check the wheels of his car before driving.