A 1-year-old boy injured in a fatal crash in Mt Eden remains is a critical condition in Starship's intensive care unit.
A 2-year-old girl who was also injured in the crash had last night been moved into a ward at the hospital in a stable condition.
The pair were injured when a double-decker bus and a car collided at the corner of Mt Eden and Bellevue Rds about 3.30pm on Tuesday.
A 51-year-old man driving the car died at the scene and both toddlers were removed from the car in a critical condition and rushed to Starship Hospital.
It's understood the driver of the car had a medical event, swerved across the median strip at some speed and into the oncoming bus, Auckland Tramways Union president Gary Froggatt said.
Froggatt also revealed the bus driver and a learner driver on the NZ Bus 277 route heading down Mt Eden Rd towards the city were taken to Auckland Hospital with minor injuries and discharged on Tuesday night.
Mt Eden local Mikey Beban, who was one of the first on the scene and called 111, has been left haunted.
Beban said he had not been able to stop thinking about the aftermath of the crash.
"I woke up at some ungodly hour this morning and the first thing I thought of was seeing the man in his car, just groaning, obviously his last moments - and the wee kiddies," he said.
"When I saw the ladies running across to the ambulance with the wee baby in their arms, the wee 1-year-old boy, it was like one of those war scenes where they are carrying the baby all limp. Those were the images."
He had been so affected by the crash that he planned to drop off a couple of soft toys and a card to Starship for the children involved.
The girl was wearing a "party dress" he described as a light salmon colour with glitter on it.
"It was a lovely little dress... Like she maybe was going somewhere to a little lunch or a little party."
The bus driver was devastated, Froggatt said, and NZ Bus had told him to take time off work and get some counselling. He has driven buses for five years.
The driver, who is married with children and lives in Mangere, had suffered the sort of trauma that would live with him forever, Froggatt said.
About half a dozen passengers were on the bus when it crashed. Two suffered minor and moderate injuries and were taken to Auckland Hospital.
Camera footage from the bus had been retrieved by NZ Bus, Froggatt said.
Bus driver and First Union spokesman Phil Morgan said the driver was a responsible bloke who would be hurt by what happened.
"Obviously the driver will be very, very upset.
"This sort of thing is very traumatic. We're on the road all week they come out of the blue and affect us [bus drivers] as they would anyone else."
The crash was only a matter of time as congested Auckland roads created a recipe for disaster, Morgan said.
"We're dealing with gridlock traffic virtually every day of the week. We see a lot of near misses," he said.
- Additional reporting by Amy Wiggins