Morgan Tait is the NZ Herald's police reporter.

Girl comforts victim of runaway van crushed against house

A 15-year-old girl called for help and comforted a man crushed in his van door under her house.

Danielle Paul was home alone in Bonito Place, Bayview, North Shore, when she felt what she thought was an earthquake shortly before 3.30pm yesterday.

"I came downstairs and there was a van in our fence under the deck.

"There was a guy in there and he was moaning. After I called the ambulance I went through the garage and came up and was talking to my mum on the phone.

"I could see him and he was like stuck with his legs hanging out of the door and it was pressed up against the side."

"I was asking him if he was okay and talking to him, then another lady came and she was helping, too."

The 37-year-old man was taken to Auckland Hospital in a serious condition, after fire crews worked for 30 minutes to free him.

Senior sergeant James Bothamley said the man reverse parked in his driveway. The van then rolled forward and he tried to jump back inside to stop it, but did not make it.

He ended up pinned against the wall of the Paul's house, half inside the vehicle, and underneath a deck, Bothamley said.

"A resident of one of the houses here has come home and reversed a van into his driveway.

"He has attempted to jump into the driver's seat to stop the van and hasn't quite made it and ended up trapped under the deck of a neighbouring house."

Danielle's father, Pita, said he hoped the man was okay.

"I just hope that he's alright, the fence and things can be fixed."

He said he did not know the man but knew he had a young family.

Two ambulances and two fire engines, as well as a number of police cars were at the scene yesterday. Tape was hung across a driveway on the quiet cul-de-sac, and a number of residents were out on the street. The driveway that the van rolled down was steep, as a lot of the houses in the area are built into the hill.

- NZ Herald

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