Queen's Birthday road toll rises to seven

The scene of a two-vehicle crash on State Highway 2 near Masterton on Sunday. Photo / Gerald Ford
The scene of a two-vehicle crash on State Highway 2 near Masterton on Sunday. Photo / Gerald Ford

The Queen's Birthday road toll is now up to seven following the death of a man involved in a crash yesterday.

Police confirmed this morning a second man has died following a two-vehicle crash on State Highway 2, near Mt Bruce in northern Wairarapa, late yesterday morning.

The crash had earlier claimed the life of another man.

"The man [the latest to have died] was flown to Wellington Hospital, where he later passed away," police said.

Three people - including a mother and her baby - were also injured in the accident.

A crane was used to remove and lift the car from the tree following a crash in South Auckland. Photo / Michael Craig
A crane was used to remove and lift the car from the tree following a crash in South Auckland. Photo / Michael Craig

Emergency services are this morning at the scene of a car crash in Kaikoura.

A Southern Fire Communications spokesman said at least one person was trapped in the vehicle and that firefighters were working to get them out.

Fire crews from Seddon and Ward were called to the scene, on State Highway 1 in Clarence, at about 7.30am, the spokesman said.

The condition of the person is not yet known. It is believed only one vehicle is involved in the accident.

Police are urging motorists to take care on the roads this morning because of numerous cases of cars sliding on ice.

Particular care was needed on the Desert Highway and State Highway 5, both north and south of Rotorua.

Police earlier issued a similar warning for southern motorists because of frosty conditions.

Drivers have been advised to take care and allow extra time on roads in the Queenstown Lakes area this morning, with winter driving conditions making many hazardous.

All roads are open, although most major routes have had grit applied because of the ice.

Drivers were asked to take special care in hill suburbs, such as Queenstown Hill and Fernhill, in shaded areas and in the Wanaka CBD, where there is significant frost and ice.

Black ice was said to be on SH6 through the Kawarau Gorge, SH8 between Alexandra and Raes Junction, and the Lindis Pass between Tarras and Omarama.

Additionally, fog causing limited visibility on the roads north of Woodville.

Police said about 7-8km of road was affected with visibility down to 150-200m in some areas.

Motorists needed to ensure they drove to the conditions and reduced speed where necessary, police said.

"With the expected increase of vehicles on the road throughout today, motorists should look to plan their journey early and leave plenty of time to get to their destination."

Last year five people died on the same holiday weekend. The official Queen's Birthday weekend period began at 4pm on Friday and ends 6am tomorrow.

National road policing manager Superintendent Steve Greally said everyone had to play their part in staying safe while driving to ensure no one else was killed or injured.

"The last thing our staff want to be doing is more knocking on the doors of friends and loved ones this weekend to deliver the awful news that someone they knew and loved has died."

Yesterday afternoon, one person was killed after the vehicle they were driving struck a tree on Dun Rd, near Kaingaroa Forest.

One person was killed after the vehicle they were driving struck a tree on Dun Rd, near Kaingaroa Forest. Photo / Ben Fraser
One person was killed after the vehicle they were driving struck a tree on Dun Rd, near Kaingaroa Forest. Photo / Ben Fraser

Earlier in Mangere East about 9.15am, two people had to be cut from a car after it crashed into a tree on Ferguson St.

A 16-year-old was in a critical condition and a 9-year-old and another person were seriously injured. Four people were in the car.

On Saturday, a person was killed in a three-vehicle crash on State Highway 1 at Greta Valley, between Christchurch and Kaikoura.

About two hours earlier a motorcyclist died after crashing into a parked vehicle on Castlebane Drive in the Auckland suburb of Flat Bush.

A 64-year-old Kaikoura man, Stuart Ernest Windle was the first road fatality this holiday weekend. He was killed and six others, including a pregnant woman, were badly injured in a four-car crash on SH1 north of Dunedin just before 6pm on Friday.

The event to which Mr Windle was heading, the Hurricane Rodders Mid Winter Run, may be named in his honour next year.

Police said Mr Windle's death was with the criminal investigation unit.

"A number of witnesses have been spoken to but inquiries are continuing," Detective Sergeant Dave Nelson, of the Dunedin CIB, said.

Mr Nelson said the serious crash investigator was conducting inquiries and examinations of the vehicles involved.

Mr Windle's vehicle, two other custom cars and a late model sports car were travelling south to the Mid Winter Run on Friday when the crash happened.

Damaged vehicles were strewn across the highway after the crash. Mr Windle's Ford was down a bank nearby.

Emergency services personnel at the scene said it appeared a vehicle had crossed the centre line on a corner.

Mid Winter Run participants displayed their cars in the Octagon yesterday.

Friends said Mr Windle loved the 1937 Ford Cabriolet convertible in which he lost his life.

Danny Bisschop said Mr Windle had lived in Dunedin in the past, before moving to Kaikoura, and was about to move to Christchurch.

Mr Bisschop described him as "a great guy, so thoughtful".

"We're just gutted, because he was coming down to spend some time with us."

Mr Bisschop said the semi-retired businessman, like other hot rod owners, cared about his car, and drove carefully so as not to damage it.

Mr Bisschop said Mr Windle would have wanted the Mid Winter Run to go ahead.

Hurricane Rodders president Wayne Nicol said the club considered stopping the event, but it was agreed it would take place.

There had been "a bit of a toast" for Mr Windle at the event, and the club next year would consider changing its name to a memorial event for him.

The second death of the holiday weekend occurred early Saturday when two cars collided on SH3 near Te Kuiti. One person died and two others were injured, one seriously.

- NZ Herald

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