A Tauranga man, his daughter and their dog had a miraculous escape from serious injury after he suffered a seizure and crashed into a power pole while driving through Foxton late yesterday evening.
Jamie Bouzaid and his 14-year-old daughter Keylah were rushed to Palmerston North Hospital by ambulance, unaware of what had become of Poppy, their 14-month-old dog.
Bouzaid, who was still under observation for concussion, said he completely blacked out. He had never had anything like that happen before, he said.
When he came, to his first thoughts were of his daughter, who he hadn't seen in seven years. They had planned a holiday and were on their way to visit his father in Wellington.
After learning his daughter was unhurt, he went back to the accident site to find Poppy after being discharged from hospital around midnight.
"I didn't have a clue what had happened. I came to and a policeman was standing next to me and I said 'what are you doing here', and he said I had been in an accident, and I said 'no I haven't'," he said.
"I had no clue."
Poppy was thrown from the backseat on impact when the car hit a ditch, smashing the front window, and she fled the scene in distress.
"Someone said 'go back to the site' because they thought that she would come back there to look for me," he said.
Bouzaid said at 2.30am this morning he found Poppy near where the Holden Astra had crashed.
"I'm absolutely so stoked that we found her," he said.
Poppy was a rescue dog that Bouzaid had owned since she was 8 months old. She had quickly become part of the family.
Looking back at the accident site, he said it was lucky they had survived. He said his daughter told him he began convulsing before blacking out. It had been a terrifying ordeal for her, and he was thankful she was uninjured.
Bouzaid said he still had a headache and was told by hospital staff to relax while he recovered and to alert them if he showed any signs of ongoing concussion.
He said his car was "totalled", and he feared he may be liable for damages to the lampost.
Bouzaid put out a post on social media appealing for anyone who might have seen Poppy, which was shared 37,000 time within hours.