EMERALD police have praised the efforts of members of the community who helped foil the attempts of two teens on a runaway rampage in the early hours of Friday morning.
Police allege two juveniles initially stole a Ford Falcon sedan about midnight on Friday from Egan St, Emerald, where it was parked with the keys in the ignition.
About 2am the car was identified driving along Moody St, but on approach by the police, the occupants escaped and were unable to be located.
About 7am, police received a report that another vehicle had been stolen, this time a Commodore sedan from Colleen Ave.
A short time later the Commodore was seen parked at a service station in Capella when police were made aware of the theft of a third vehicle, also from Capella.
Emerald police were driving north to Capella when both vehicles were seen on the highway travelling south back to Emerald.
One vehicle, which was seen driving dangerously through roadworks at Theresa Ck, narrowly missed a worksite employee before crashing into bush on the eastern side of the roadworks.
The second vehicle continued through the roadworks before also crashing.
It ended up off the side of the road in scrub, just south of the construction site.
When police arrived on the scene, witnesses at the worksite directed police to the location of both vehicles and the whereabouts of the alleged offenders.
Both suspects were arrested and charged with stealing, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle and numerous other traffic-related offences.
One was remanded in custody and the other was bailed to appear in the Emerald Children's Court.
Emerald officer-in-charge Sergeant Peter McFarlane commended the diligence of those at the worksite who traced the final movements of the vehicles and offenders.
"We would not have been able to locate these persons if not for the assistance of the people at the roadworks site," Snr Sgt McFarlane said.
Snr Sgt McFarlane said also of concern was the failure of members of the public to secure their vehicles and valuables.
"Five vehicles stolen in the last three weeks from private residences have had the keys left in the ignition," he said.
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