Teens remain critical after two Rotorua road incidents

Two teenagers are still fighting for their lives after they were struck by vehicles in separate incidents around Rotorua yesterday.

A 17-year-old girl suffered severe injuries when she was allegedly run over by a car driven by a drunken friend on State Highway 33 early in the morning.

Later in the day, a 16-year-old boy was struck by a tourist bus and suffered serious head injuries.

A Waikato Hospital spokeswoman said both teenagers were in critical conditions in intensive care this morning.

Police yesterday arrested a 19-year-old man in relation to the earlier crash at Whangamarino, northeast of Rotorua.

The man, who police said was known to the 17-year-old girl, was due to appear in Rotorua District Court tomorrow charged with driving with excess breath alcohol, careless driving causing injury and driving while suspended.

Both teens lived near the scene of the crash.

Officers have asked anyone who heard raised voices or a disturbance in the area to come forward.

A witness reportedly heard shouting and said the girl had been walking away from an argument with the driver when she was run over.

Family and friends visited the crash scene yesterday.

CIB members have interviewed witnesses, but still want to speak to anyone who was travelling on SH33 between 3am and 3.30am near the Whangamarino School.

Later that morning, a 16-year-old pedestrian was struck by a bus carrying Israeli tourists on Old Taupo Rd.

Police said he suffered serious head injuries in the crash about 11.30am.

The incidents came on an awful day on the roads, with one person killed and two others seriously injured in crashes across the country.

In Dunedin, a teenager was trapped in a car when it smashed into a power pole about 3.50am.

The crash, on East Taieri-Allanton Rd, "split the car in two", said ambulance communications spokeswoman Sharleen Murtha.

It took firefighters an hour to free the teenager from the wreckage and he was taken to hospital in a serious condition.

A man died and another was seriously injured after a crash between a car and a truck in South Canterbury.

The men, aged in their 20s, were travelling in a car that collided with a truck shortly after midday at the intersection of SH80 and SH8 near Twizel.

The injured man was taken to Timaru Hospital.

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- APNZ

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