Elderly woman stable after crash

By Peter de Graaf

A 77-year-old Kerikeri woman remains in the intensive care unit at Whangarei Hospital after a family's horror start to 2013.

She was one of 12 people hurt about 12.50am on January 1 when a Pear Tree courtesy van allegedly pulled out of the driveway of Kerikeri Park Hotel on Kerikeri Rd, having dropped off two guests from a New Year's Eve function, and was hit by a Ford Falcon heading towards town from State Highway 10.

The van was flung on to its side, throwing some of its occupants on to the road and coming to rest in the opposite lane, while the Ford careered on to the far verge and just missed a power pole. The seven passengers, most of whom were from one family, and driver in the van had been heading to Kerikeri's Reinga Rd. Six people were lying on the road when emergency services arrived. St John treated 12 people at the scene.

Kerikeri police Senior Sergeant Peter Robinson said all were improving and most had been discharged from hospital, although a few would require ongoing treatment.

The most seriously injured, a 77-year-old woman, was yesterday still in intensive care at Whangarei Hospital, where staff described her condition as stable.

She suffered a broken hip and ribs as well as internal and impact injuries. A 49-year-old man was due to undergo facial surgery yesterday.

An investigation by Kerikeri police and the Whangarei-based Serious Crash Unit was ongoing, Mr Robinson said.

- Northern Advocate

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