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Driver dies after serious crash on Gibbston Valley Highway near Queenstown

Author
Otago Daily Times,
Publish Date
Mon, 20 Dec 2021, 3:09pm
The car crashed down the bank before stopping near the Kawarau River. Photo / Guy Williams, ODT
The car crashed down the bank before stopping near the Kawarau River. Photo / Guy Williams, ODT

Driver dies after serious crash on Gibbston Valley Highway near Queenstown

Author
Otago Daily Times,
Publish Date
Mon, 20 Dec 2021, 3:09pm

A person has died after their car crashed down a bank on the Gibbston Valley Highway near Queenstown. 

About 25 emergency service personnel were called to the crash site at 10.30am today after the car collided with a van. 

It left State Highway 6 and rolled down a bank before coming to rest on its roof above a roaring Kawarau River in the Nevis Bluff area. 

Emergency services at the scene this morning. Photo / Guy Williams, ODT 

Police confirmed this afternoon that the driver died at the scene. No one else was in the vehicle. 

Two people with injuries in the damaged van were taken to Lakes District Hospital, police said. 

Their conditions were not yet known. 

A witness told an ODT reporter the car was on its roof and "one roll away" from being in the water. 

The reporter described the river as a "raging torrent" and very high when the accident happened. 

Helicopters had flown over the site and landed a few hundred metres away, he said. 
Part of SH6 was closed for a time, with traffic backed up right to Gibbston. 

But about 2pm, the NZ Transport Agency/Waka Kotahi advised that highway was open under stop/go traffic management and continued delays could be expected. 

Police asked motorists to have patience while the backlog clears. 

The police's serious crash unit was at the scene this afternoon. 

There had been up to 25 emergency service personnel at the scene during the day. 

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