WATCH: Mother's plea to drivers after son's death
THE mother of well-known Gladstone AFL player Jared Hayne is asking young drivers to take care on the road after her son's tragic death less than a fortnight ago.
Still coming to terms with her family's loss, Leanne Hayne wants to leave a positive legacy for her son through her campaign for safer roads.
On December 29 Jared was killed after his sedan and a small truck towing a caravan collided head-on on the Bruce Highway near Miriam Vale.
Police are still investigating the incident and the cause of the crash is still unknown.
Mrs Hayne has spoken out in the wake of the 21-year-old's death in an effort to raise awareness about road safety.
One issue she highlighted was the condition of the Bruce Highway.
"It would be lovely if we can have better roads," Mrs Hayne said.
"The status of the Bruce Highway isn't always good. People become impatient and don't make the best decisions.
"It would be a dream come true if we can have a lovely four-lane highway from Brisbane to Cairns."
Mrs Hayne urged drivers not to take unnecessary risks.
"Take your time to your destination and take frequent rest breaks," Mrs Hayne said.
"If you're tired or not feeling OK, pull over."
While she believes the 100-hour requirement for young provisional drivers is adequate, Mrs Hayne said they also need to be prepared for unexpected hazards.
"I think constant education has to be relentless," she said.
"Young drivers have to be vigilant on the roads - not only their own driving but for other people."
Mrs Hayne is also calling for stricter penalties for drivers who are distracted on the road, especially by mobile phones.
She remembered her son as a sociable person who would "take life to the fullest".
"Jared was adventurous and a very outdoor person," she said. "He had a good friendship circle and always wanted to be friends with everyone so he was happy. Jared was a caring person."
He played with the Gladstone Mudcrabs (since renamed the Suns) while growing up and moved to Brisbane in 2016 to play for the Mt Gravatt Vultures.
Jared was also completing an apprenticeship as a boilermaker with Osmac Apprenticeships.
Mrs Hayne said her family had been overwhelmed by the community response after news of the crash spread.
"There was quite a lot of sadness attached to (his death) because of his age and how it happened," she said.
"There was a huge outpouring on social media."
At the time of his death, Mrs Hayne and her family were camping on the Gold Coast.
Jared was meant to join them for the trip. She said they were in disbelief when police officers informed them.
"We were very sad, in shock and in tears," Mrs Hayne said.
"We were trying to process if it could be true or not true."
The family is planning memorial services in Gladstone and Brisbane with a date to be set soon.