The driver of a car involved in a head-on crash with another vehicle, leaving one person dead and four others seriously injured, says he can't remember a thing.
Anthony Paul Jacobus McMillan, 54, has entered guilty pleas to charges relating to the crash that killed Whakatāne nurse Sheila Bugden (nee Cheng) on December 14 last year.
McMillan pleaded guilty when he appeared in the Rotorua District Court on Friday last week to one charge of careless driving causing Bugden's death and four charges of careless driving causing injury to William Kirk, Rhys Bugden, Michelle Lee and a child.
The crash happened after McMillan, who was travelling on State Highway 30 towards Rotorua, crossed the centreline on a right-hand bend near Hell's Gate and went on to the wrong side of the road, crashing head-on into the vehicle the other five people were travelling in.
A police summary of facts, which has now been released to the Rotorua Daily Post, said McMillan couldn't remember what happened on the day of the crash.
At previous court appearances, McMillan's lawyer, Tim Braithwaite, was looking into whether the crash was caused by McMillan suffering a medical event.
It had previously been reported Bugden's day out was planned after a tough week working in Whakatāne Hospital's ICU treating burns victims from the Whakaari/White Island eruption.
Bugden, who was in the back seat, died at the scene. Her husband Rhys, 49, was left critically injured.
The summary said Sheila Bugden, who was seated in the rear left of the car, died at the scene. Rhys Bugden, who was the front passenger, suffered a tear of the small bowel, punctured terminal ileum, multiple bowel injuries, torn colon and mesenteric haematoma.
Rhys Bugden told the Rotorua Daily Post he knew he was lucky to be alive.
"It was a bit touch and go."
He said he still suffered the effects of his injuries and couldn't work for long periods because he got tired.
"I've been back to work for a while but yeah I'm still getting over the physical effects."
Rhys Bugden told the Rotorua Daily Post he was pleased McMillan pleaded guilty to the charges.
"I didn't want it to go that far [to trial]."
Rhys Bugden said his wife of four years was the love of his life but he couldn't bring himself to talk about her to the media because he would get too emotional.
He said he didn't want to do restorative justice with McMillan or meet with him.
"I'm not interested in doing that. I will go to court at sentencing and read my victim impact statement and that will be all."
The summary of facts said the driver of the car that McMillan hit, William Kirk, suffered a lumbar spine fracture, sore ankle, chest pain, several cuts to his hands and knees, lower sternal tenderness, bruising to lower abdomen and cut to left-hand index finger joint down to tendon sheath.
Michelle Lee, who was the rear right seat passenger, suffered several broken ribs, two fractures in her sternum, two fractures in her neck, bruising and possible punctured lungs and broken back.
A child, who was sitting in the middle of the back seat, suffered internal bleeding, a head injury, bruising to the head and body and an eye injury.
McMillan was remanded on bail to reappear for sentencing at 10am on July 30.