Really hard pill to swallow’
Phillips said ‘‘I was in disbelief when I saw the size of that object that it hadn’t caused another fatality . . . Two very similar scenarios with two very different outcomes.’’
He believed the truck driver involved in the incident near Queenstown knew who they were but wasn’t coming forward, possibly for fear of prosecution.
With the increase in building sites in the area and the increase in traffic on the road, it wasn’t going to be the last crash caused by insecure loads, he said.
‘‘It’s bad enough driving on South Island roads at the best of times, then having to deal with things falling off (vehicles),’’ he said.
Oylear said: ‘‘I’m really glad to hear those kids are OK and they didn’t have to go through what I did.’’
The incident gave her a sense that the crash that killed Hale was ‘‘not just a freak accident’’, she said.
Despite the October crash taking away the love of her life she wanted to stay on in the area.
‘‘Why wouldn’t you? I came here with the intentional of this being home.
‘‘I feel close to Rutger here. I feel it would be harder for me if I leave.
‘‘We wanted to be near the mountains.’’
She had made lots of friends since the crash but it wasn’t easy being without the man she loved.
‘‘It’s been hard. I’m struggling right now . . . I guess, finding my place,’’ she said.
Nightmares and flashbacks are affecting one of the teens who narrowly dodged death when a piece of flying steel punched through a car windscreen near Queenstown two weekends ago.
The incident happened on the Lower Shotover bridge about 2pm on Saturday, May 3, when a roughly 90 centimetre, four kilogram piece of steel flew from a truck trailer and punched through the bottom of Casey Booth’s windscreen. The piece of metal grazed his little finger then veered up and cleared a four centimetre gap between the heads of Booth and his passenger Katie Scott.
After media reports a witness who saw something fly from the truc came forward to Queenstown police. However police have not yet made further progress in tracking down the driver.
Almost two weeks after the incident, 16-year-old Katie Scott, who lives in Mossburn, is still shaken.
‘‘Me and mymumhad to drive back over the same bridge the next day and I just bawled my eyes out when we hit the point that it happened. That night I had nightmares and I’ve had a few flashbacks since then, where I see the steel flying towards us.’’
There was no question in her mind that if the steel hit the windscreen at a different angle it would have easily killed her or Booth, who is a friend, or both of them.
After the near miss Booth’s pinkie finger got infected and the stress of the incident ruined his plans to give up smoking.
‘‘I’m back on the ciggies now after having a good crack at giving up. I’m also left with a car that’s probably only going to be good for scrap, so the situation’s a bit grim, but I know that we’re both really lucky to still be here.’’
Nerves of steel: Sixteen-year-old Katie Scott has had nightmares and flashbacks about the moment a 90cm, 4kg piece of steel flew through the windscreen of a car she was a passenger in.