Crash scene 'horrific'

Highway closed all day for exhaustive examination.

Highway closed all day for exhaustive examination.

Yesterday's accident scene on State Highway 35 where a Tolaga Bay man died was described as “horrific” by emergency services personnel.

A 63-year-old man was killed in the road crash which happened about 5.30am near the Waiau Road corner, 12 kilometres south of Tokomaru Bay.

“The ute the man was driving came into collision with another vehicle,” a police spokesman said.

“He was heading up the coast to go to work, and the other vehicle was heading down to Gisborne.”

The man died at the scene.

The highway remained closed all day as police carried out serious crash scene inquiries.

No other vehicle was at the crash site when the emergency services arrived yesterday morning.

Police Serious Crash Unit staff and CIB detectives spent the day carrying out a detailed and exhaustive scene examination along about 200 metres of the highway.

SH35 was finally reopened to traffic at around 7pm last night.

“We are still working to establish the circumstances of the crash in order to establish the full facts, said the police spokesman.

“We have a responsibility to the deceased and his family to clearly establish what happened, and we are also working on behalf of the coroner to provide the full picture.

“The focus for us is on closure for the victim and his family.”

Police talked to a number of people about the incident yesterday.

“We will continue to do that today to gather more evidence and help get that clear picture of the circumstances.”

Closure 'unacceptable'

The day-long road closure sparked phone calls to the Herald.

“It is ridiculous,” said one caller.

“All due respect to the families involved but it should never take this long.”

Another said it was unacceptable to have a whole road closed all day for one accident.

“If it happened on the Auckland motorway or the Hutt highway, it would be sorted immediately. If they are short-staffed they should put more people on.

“There is no alternative. It is terrible for the coast, for the people who live here like me, and for all the visitors we have at the moment.”

St John ambulance had to transport an East Cape man with an injury to hospital in Whakatane, as opposed to Gisborne Hospital, because of the road closure.

“We needed to keep the road closed for a long period to preserve the scene,” the police spokesman said.

“We were faced with a complex and difficult scene examination, that required a meticulous and detailed approach.

“Police do not make decisions to close roads like we had to yesterday arbitrarily,” he said.

“We did it because it was necessary.”

The victim’s ute has been recovered and brought to Gisborne for forensic examination.

“There will need to be a post- mortem examination at some stage,” the police spokesman said.

The victim’s name has not been released as police are still advising all next-of-kin.

“There may be a further need to close SH35 at the crash site again at some point in order to forensically map the scene,” said the police spokesman.

“We will notify the public in advance of any road closure.”

Yesterday's accident scene on State Highway 35 where a Tolaga Bay man died was described as “horrific” by emergency services personnel.

A 63-year-old man was killed in the road crash which happened about 5.30am near the Waiau Road corner, 12 kilometres south of Tokomaru Bay.

“The ute the man was driving came into collision with another vehicle,” a police spokesman said.

“He was heading up the coast to go to work, and the other vehicle was heading down to Gisborne.”

The man died at the scene.

The highway remained closed all day as police carried out serious crash scene inquiries.

No other vehicle was at the crash site when the emergency services arrived yesterday morning.

Police Serious Crash Unit staff and CIB detectives spent the day carrying out a detailed and exhaustive scene examination along about 200 metres of the highway.

SH35 was finally reopened to traffic at around 7pm last night.

“We are still working to establish the circumstances of the crash in order to establish the full facts, said the police spokesman.

“We have a responsibility to the deceased and his family to clearly establish what happened, and we are also working on behalf of the coroner to provide the full picture.

“The focus for us is on closure for the victim and his family.”

Police talked to a number of people about the incident yesterday.

“We will continue to do that today to gather more evidence and help get that clear picture of the circumstances.”

Closure 'unacceptable'

The day-long road closure sparked phone calls to the Herald.

“It is ridiculous,” said one caller.

“All due respect to the families involved but it should never take this long.”

Another said it was unacceptable to have a whole road closed all day for one accident.

“If it happened on the Auckland motorway or the Hutt highway, it would be sorted immediately. If they are short-staffed they should put more people on.

“There is no alternative. It is terrible for the coast, for the people who live here like me, and for all the visitors we have at the moment.”

St John ambulance had to transport an East Cape man with an injury to hospital in Whakatane, as opposed to Gisborne Hospital, because of the road closure.

“We needed to keep the road closed for a long period to preserve the scene,” the police spokesman said.

“We were faced with a complex and difficult scene examination, that required a meticulous and detailed approach.

“Police do not make decisions to close roads like we had to yesterday arbitrarily,” he said.

“We did it because it was necessary.”

The victim’s ute has been recovered and brought to Gisborne for forensic examination.

“There will need to be a post- mortem examination at some stage,” the police spokesman said.

The victim’s name has not been released as police are still advising all next-of-kin.

“There may be a further need to close SH35 at the crash site again at some point in order to forensically map the scene,” said the police spokesman.

“We will notify the public in advance of any road closure.”

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Tiro - 1 month ago
Seriously, someone passed away in one of the worst ways imaginable and all some people are moaning about is the closed road. Would you care if it was your loved one they were trying to get the answers for?

Ken Carrington - 1 month ago
Some people love the sound of their own voices don't they. The people moaning about the road closure are obviously not locals or they wouldn't be so insensitive, or they are locals and are soft in the head.

Phyl Broughton - 1 month ago
Tautoko what Tiro said! If it were your whanau in that accident, you would be demanding answers! Get over yourselves people!!!

Ringo, Melbourne - 1 month ago
I know the deceased very well. The investigation took so long because the evidence at the scene indicated that two vehicles were involved, but only one was still at the scene. Like any investigation, the police have to get it right and if it takes all day, so be it. Spare a thought for the whanau, knowing their loved one was still at the scene all that time as well.

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