The motorcyclists involved in a serious crash at Kawakawa's Three Bridges on Saturday are likely to be charged with driving offences, police say.

The crash occurred when three riders, all members of the Tribesmen motorcycle gang, attempted to overtake a four-wheel-drive towing a large trailer as it was crossing the middle bridge, Mid North police Senior Sergeant Brian Swann said.

The first rider made it but the second collided head-on with an oncoming Corvette. The third bike, and one other vehicle, were caught up in the ensuing carnage. Both riders were flown to Whangarei Hospital by Northland Electricity Rescue Helicopter. One, aged 47, suffered severe leg injuries and had his leg amputated. He remains in a serious condition in hospital.

The other, aged 40, suffered leg and hand fractures and was discharged from hospital on Monday. It is understood one of the riders was catapulted on to the trailer, possibly saving him from being run over by the following vehicle.


The Corvette, a rare 1984 model which had been imported from the US, was extensively damaged. The driver suffered various injuries including whiplash and seatbelt injuries.

The two bikes, both Harley Davidsons, were badly damaged.

Mr Swann said it was highly likely the motorcyclists would be charged. The crash occurred on a narrow bridge with double yellow lines.

"It's one of the most idiotic places you can think of to overtake," he said.

The Serious Crash Unit's investigation is continuing.