Natalie Kapetaneas got such a fright that she dialled 911 when two cars crashed outside her cafe located five minutes north of Taupo on January 18.
Aucklander Faye Emery (67) and her three great grandchildren Joey (10), Bevin (7) and Catie (3) were on their way to Turangi when they collided with a north bound car driven by tourists.
"We were shutting up the cafe, I had to assess the injuries, two helicopters and several ambulances came to help," Ms Kapetaneas said.
For five days Faye was in an induced coma, suffering a ruptured spleen a smashed wrist and broken rib. Catie has a suspected serious brain injury, while Bevin and Joey have serious injuries.
The children's mother and Fayes granddaughter, Melissa Price, is at Waikato Hospital supporting them all.
The driver of the North bound vehicle appeared in court yesterday.
Fayes two Chihuahua's were in the car with her, and the younger female dog Bubbles (2) jumped out of the wreckage and has been the subject of a prolonged search at Craters of the Moon Mountain Bike Park, involving Fayes family and many locals, with five sightings so far.
Meanwhile Kumeu based daughter Leanne Price drove to Taupo with her partner Richard Faulknor hoping to find Bubbles before Faye woke up.
The couple say they have been inundated with kindness from local people, including locals Ken Moody and Lindy Park who they are staying with, and who are actively involved in the search for Bubbles.
"The car was full of petrol and the mountain bikers don't like the smell of it. The council gave us permission to leave the car in place because we thought Bubbles might come back here. The police put tape up."
Concern that the car would be broken into by thieves, Richard and Ken mounted a round the clock watch over Fayes wrecked car, right next to a popular mountain biking track.
Leanne says that Bubbles will be very scared, but she thinks the dog will come back.
Bubbles likes to eat Little Duckies Treats and searchers have taken these up into the surrounding area to try and lure her down. Fayes son Aaron Price is hoping volunteers will continue to help search for Bubbles, for more details see facebook page @HelpFindBubbles.