Road fixed after wet weather double fatal crash
A stretch of road north of Levin where two Malaysian tourists died in July was notorious for crashes until it was fixed not long after the accident, a nearby resident says.
Evvon Le Fern Tiang was driving a rented people-mover with her parents and other family members in the vehicle, when it slid out of control and hit a tree on July 9th.
Both Tiang’s parents died as a result of the crash, and she was convicted on two counts of careless driving causing death.
However, Kevin O’Malley, who lives next to the stretch of road where the crash occurred, said there had been several crashes within a few weeks at almost exactly the same spot when the road was wet.
He said contractors had carried out work on the road since and there had been no further accidents that he was aware of.
“All [the crashes] were in [approximately] a 30m area, and all were after it had rained.”
At the time of Tiang’s sentencing, Judge Susan Edwards said a “moment of inattention” caused Tiang to steer over the centre line, and she then over-corrected the vehicle which fishtailed and hit two trees.
“It was a momentary misjudgment on your part,” she said. “It was carelessness at the very lowest end of the spectrum.”
Tiang was convicted and disqualified from driving for 12 months for each of the charges. She returned to Malaysia toarrange funerals for her parents.
NZTA Systems Manager Ross I’Anson said records showed since 2012 there were two crashes prior to Tiang’s, both non-injury.
“The NZ Transport Agency watercut the excess bitumen after the fatal crash as a previously identified and planned programme of works,” he said. “We are reviewing the data in this area to determine if there is any additional maintenance required.”