A young autistic Tauranga girl has been left shaken after a car slammed into the fence next to where she was playing.
Ash Highnam was working at her Ōtūmoetai property yesterday when she heard a huge "crash" and a "massive bang" outside her window.
Her 8-year-old daughter Tara had been playing and digging in the garden.
"My heart was racing."
She ran out to find her autistic daughter stunned on the trampoline, looking at the wreckage of a white car that had just slammed through their fence.
Highnam quickly told her daughter to go inside and went to check on the people who had crashed.
She said all was fine, but the incident had completely shaken her young daughter's world.
"As she is autistic, she bottles things up as she isn't able to process things properly."
Highnam compared it to a coke bottle, where things slowly shake up and then pop out in an "explosive meltdown", she said.
She said it had affected the young girl a lot and had "added to the stress of the lockdown".
Little things like not being able to go to the park were extremely hard for Tara to understand, so a traumatic incident like this was devastating for the girl, she said.
The family's gate had been extensively damaged and Highman had needed to tie up the fence as it was a safety issue for her daughter, she said.
Police were called to the incident on Ōtūmoetai Rd about 1.30pm yesterday, a police spokeswoman said.
A car reportedly collided with a fence, gate and a power box. Police were making inquiries into the circumstances of the incident, she said.
This month was Autism Awareness month and Highnam said this was a clear example of how seemingly small things can cause extreme confusion and problems for those with the condition.