Support and counselling are being provided to the Higgins Bay of Plenty team, following the tragic death of three co-workers in a traffic accident on Tuesday.

Parent company Fletcher Building Chief Executive Ross Taylor said team-mates have been heavily impacted by the loss of Haki Hiha, David Eparaima and Dudley Soul Raroa.

The company is also doing everything they can to support the loved ones of the deceased, he said.

Taylor said Fletcher Construction chief executive Peter Reidy and Higgins general manager Ken Lotu-Iiga travelled to Rotorua on the night of the accident to provide on-the-ground support for "our Higgins' people and the men's families".


"We are grateful to everyone, including our roading industry partners, who have reached out with messages of support and sympathy following the loss."

The company was fully co-operating with police and other authorities as formal investigations into the accident took place.

"As part of our own investigation into the accident, we will be working with NZTA and others in the industry."

A police spokeswoman said this morning that it would take some time to establish a cause for the crash and the matter was now with the coroner.

A paraglider had come forward and made a statement, she said.

Meanwhile, the Rotorua Lakes Council had taken a moment's silence to honour the three men at a full council meeting today.

Mayor Steve Chadwick passed the council's condolences to the families of Dudley Soul Raroa, David Eparaima, and Haki Hiha.

"Also to their employers Higgins, one of the council contractors, where the three men worked. Two of these three were former, long-serving, Castlecorp staff [the Council Controlled Organisation now part of Infracore]."


She said "when something as tragic as this happens in the line of their work, the families are very affected".

She also passed the council's condolences to Infracore staff members who used to work with the men.

"This is very widespread and devastating."

Roading & Infrastructure Union AWUNZ Inc also expressed its sympathies to the families and loved ones of the dead men.

Raroa and Eparaima were former members of union.

Union secretary Maurice Davis said the immense shock in the Rotorua community of losing three of its own was also being felt by roading workers and their employers nationwide.