The Territory road toll has risen to 40 following a fatal motor vehicle crash on the Barkly Highway, 30kms west of the Barkly homestead.
Detective Acting Senior Sergeant Brendan Lindner said emergency services were alerted to the vehicle rollover just before 4:00pm yesterday.
“A Toyota Troop Carrier with a total of nine passengers left the road and rolled, resulting in the tragic death of a 2 month old child.
“A number of other occupants aged 2 to 49 years old were conveyed to Tennant Creek Hospital for various injuries, with the most serious then flown to Alice Springs Hospital. A 22-year-old female passenger remains in a critical condition.”
Major Crash Investigators from Alice Springs attended and assessed the scene.
“At this early stage of the investigation, it appears that the 47-year-old female driver may have fallen asleep and lost control of the vehicle,” said Detective A/Senior Sergeant Lindner.
“Driver fatigue and lack of proper child restraints and the non-wearing of seatbelts all appear to be contributing factors.
“This tragic loss of life serves as a reminder to all motorists to ensure they take adequate breaks and rest when driving long distances.
“If you are travelling with children, it is imperative that they be seated and secured in correctly fitted child restraints.”
The Barkly Highway has since been reopened to traffic.
The Territory road toll this time last year was 42.