Driver’s seizure leads to round­about may­hem

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By KARO­LINE TUCKEY

Only sheer luck and the quick re­ac­tions of a pas­sen­ger averted a more dan­ger­ous crash when a car plunged through traf­fic at a Pare­mata round­about while the driver was gripped by a seizure.

The 70-year-old Horowhenua driver had just ex­ited from the large Pare­mata round­about on State High­way 1 af­ter mid­day on Novem­ber 30, and was en­ter­ing the smaller round­about lead­ing to­wards Pau­ata­hanui In­let when he had a seizure.

‘‘As he came around the round­about he had a seizure and had the foot hard on the ac­cel­er­a­tor,’’ con­sta­ble Wolf­gang Haist said.

‘‘They ended up go­ing the wrong way around the lit­tle round­about and the friend on the pas­sen­ger’s side grabbed the steer­ing wheel and pulled it to­wards him, and that pre­vented them go­ing head first into a wall, and they ended up do­ing a 180 and go­ing off the road into the water pipe.’’

The car knocked over a lamp­post, sideswiped an em­bank­ment where it dis­lodged about 10 me­tres of metal fence rail­ing, crossed four lanes of traf­fic and col­lided head on with a large con­crete block hous­ing water mains, wedg­ing the car over the top of it.

‘‘It was quite for­tu­nate that they missed ev­ery other car on the road, be­cause it was quite busy,’’ Mr Haist said.

‘‘The [other driv­ers] just braked hard and were able to avoid the car as it crossed in front of them.’’

At least four other cars were trav­el­ling through the in­ter­sec­tion at the time.

The man’s white BMW sedan, which was ‘‘his pride and joy’’, likely also re­duced the re­sult­ing trauma, Mr Haist said. ‘‘They were in a very nice big safe car.’’ As a re­sult of the ac­ci­dent the driver suf­fered a mi­nor back in­jury, he was taken to hos­pi­tal by Welling­ton Free Am­bu­lance. The pas­sen­ger was un­hurt.

‘‘He wasn’t go­ing fast, but it cer­tainly could have been much worse. There was noth­ing he could have done,’’ Mr Haist said.

Round­about scare: A car nar­rowly avoided nearby traf­fic when it plunged through a Pare­mata round­about out of con­trol af­ter the driver suf­fered a seizure.

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