Wellington's Mayor feared he was about to die in the moments before his car collided with a truck.
Instead he was lucky to escape unscathed after being caught in a crash which left his car ripped apart.
Justin Lester was returning from a UN Holocaust Remembrance service at Makara Cemetery this afternoon.
But on the return trip down Makara Hill Road Lester and his Chief of Staff Joseph Romanos were caught in the head-on crash.
Lester said he was "pretty stoked" that neither of them suffered any injury.
"When you've got a car coming down, on your side of the road, you do fear the worst.
"I thought that was the end of it.
"Joseph was driving, and he swerved, which was very fortunate for us. Because if it was front on it might have gone over the top of us."
The truck driver is also believed to have escaped injury.
Lester said he called his wife to tell her about what had happened, but admitted he "played it down".
"So she'll probably be a bit shaken to see the photos, I think."
The police attended, and towed the Mayor's car away.
Lester also posted about the incident on his Facebook page.
"A truck coming in the opposite direction lost control, crossed the centre line, and ran into the car we were driving," Lester said.
"My Chief of Staff Joseph Romanos was driving and bore the brunt of the impact.
"We're both OK, but feeling a bit ginger."
Lester added that it was "probably time for a beer".
Police have not ruled out the possibility of charges being laid.