Boy electrocuted at home

By Gary Hamilton-Irvine

A 10-year-old boy has died after being electrocuted while playing in a garage at his Rotorua house.

The boy, Matthew Smith, was believed to be playing with a hair dryer or hair straightener device when he died about 5pm on Monday.

Ambulance and fire service staff were called to the Mount View Dr property shortly after the incident but were unable to resuscitate the boy.

Matthew was rushed to Rotorua Hospital where doctors spent at least 30 minutes trying to save him.

He was pronounced dead at hospital.

Senior Sergeant Brendon Keenan of the Rotorua police said the boy was found by members and first aid was applied.

 Mr Keenan said no other people were involved or harmed in the incident.

"Police are not pursuing any further inquiries in relation to the sudden death and the matter is now before the Coroner."

A spokeswoman for the family this morning said the community had rallied around them in support.

"They are just getting on with mourning what has happened and would just really like to be left in peace to get through this difficult time,'' the spokeswoman said.

"They have plenty of support around them, both from the family and the community.

"At this stage it's in the hands of the coroner and no decisions have been made [about a funeral].''

She said it was a traumatic time for the family and they would not speak publicly about their son's death.

St John Ambulance Rotorua operation team manager Darryl Stretch said when ambulance and fire service staff attended they spent about 10 minutes at the scene.

"His mother was very distraught and so were the rest of the family."

He said they transported the boy to hospital as a status one patient, meaning in a critical condition.

Rotorua Fire Brigade senior station officer Jim Prescott said fire officers helped perform CPR on the boy.

However, the boy did not show any response at the scene.

Mr Prescott said they would often help ambulance staff to transport patients or to perform CPR.


- Bay of Plenty Times

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