An elderly woman died after she was struck by a vehicle while crossing the road on a mobility scooter in Tauranga on Thursday.

The collision happened on 9th Ave in the CBD shortly before 12.30pm.

The police said the woman died at the scene.

Witness Donna Howitt said the woman was crossing the road when she was hit by a 4WD vehicle exiting the Cameron Rd roundabout on to 9th Ave.


Howitt had been approaching the intersection in her vehicle when she saw the collision.

The driver braked immediately, she said. Everyone who saw the crash stopped and jumped out.

The woman was lying on the ground and was not moving. Someone went to help her but another bystander said not to move her and to wait for paramedics.

"It was horrible."

A Bay of Plenty Times reporter at the scene said bystanders had gathered around the woman, shading her with an umbrella while waiting for emergency services to arrive.

The scooter appeared to be wedged underneath the 4WD vehicle, he said, and people were blocking traffic from turning on to 9th Ave.

A section of the road between Cameron Rd and St John St was later closed and the Police Serious Crash Unit was investigating.

A police spokeswoman said investigators were speaking to the driver.


Plastic sheets had been put up around one section of the crash scene and the police, the Fire Service and St John Ambulance were in attendance.

Staff from surrounding shops said they heard a loud noise and rushed out to see what had happened but did not see the incident take place.

Emergency services at the scene of a crash on 9th Ave in central Tauranga. Photo/Supplied
Emergency services at the scene of a crash on 9th Ave in central Tauranga. Photo/Supplied

Lauren Cooke, owner of the Gluten and Allergy Free Shop on the corner of Cameron Rd and 9th Ave, said traffic lights were needed at that intersection.

"I feel sick, we just feel physically sick. It's horrible to think that that has happened," she said.

"There's nowhere along here that people can cross the road."

Cooke said she had seen a lot of close calls outside her shop.

"When a traffic light goes in, a pedestrian crossing goes in, that's why I'm saying traffic lights because it will automatically put in a controlled crossing. It's got to be a controlled crossing that you feel safe to cross the road."

She said people rush to get across the intersection.

"Not just cars, I mean people. I know myself, when I cross over, I run to get across and you sometimes have to run in front of a car because if you don't, you're just not going to get across. It's horrible; it's just a very bad intersection."

On Thursday night, a police spokeswoman said the elderly woman had been identified but no name or further details would be released yet.

In 2014, Shirley Vivian O'Connor was riding a mobility scooter when she collided with a truck in Katikati township.

The 88-year-old was critically injured after her scooter hit the side of a truck in Katikati's main street as it headed to Tauranga, and she was flung underneath it.

She later died in Tauranga Hospital.

That incident was the fifth mobility scooter accident in the district in six years. In 2008 an 87-year-old man died after he was crushed under the wheels of a truck in Mount Maunganui.