There was significant damage to the house, however no one
was home at the time. Photo / Greymouth Star
A young Greymouth man says a car fleeing police would
have landed in his bedroom if he hadn't moved out earlier that
A Runanga man, believed to be in his early 20s, died after
the car he was in slammed into a house on High Street,
Greymouth, around 11pm last night during a short police
The body of a man killed in the crash remained in the vehicle
this morning. He was not the driver.
His name would not be released until he had been formally
Two other men, also believed to be in their 20's, are in Grey
Base Hospital. One was operated on last night to remove a
large piece of wood that had been impaled in his body and
remained in the intensive care unit this morning.
Cayden Dash moved out of the High Street house at 4pm
yesterday. Seven hours later a car crashed through his former
"That was where my bed would have been," he said looking at a
picture of the house this morning.
He had been given two weeks to move out, but had packed up
earlier when he found a new place to live.
"If we hadn't gotten this house, we would still have been
there," Mr Dash said.
Darren Claydon, who lived close to the crash scene, estimated
the car would have been travelling between 120-150kph when it
went past his house.
"He'd already lost it when he was out the front of my place
on the corner ... he was slightly across the centre line at
"It hit hard. I never heard the bang but I heard the skids."
He went outside to see what had happened and saw smoke coming
out of the vehicle, which had been bent in half.
"As soon as you saw it you knew there would be a fatality."
West Coast police area commander Inspector John Canning said
a homicide investigation had been launched.
"There are two reasons for this. One is because there was a
pursuit, the other is because the driver is not dead and
someone has to be culpable when there is a death."
Mr Canning said the constable involved in the pursuit was out
of his vehicle, near the Catholic Church when he saw a white
Subaru station wagon, travelling south, speed past him.
"The police officer decided it needed to be stopped. He
jumped into his patrol car, turned on the siren and lights
and a short pursuit followed."
The constable lost sight of the vehicle as it rounded the
sweeping bend alongside the hospital, Mr Canning said.
"As the police officer came around the corner himself he
found the vehicle had crashed into a house on the left hand
side of High Street."
Speed and alcohol were believed to have played a part in the
The officer involved in the pursuit had been stood down as
per police procedure, Mr Canning said. Welfare services had
been made available to him.
The pursuit will be investigated by the Independent Police
- Nicholas McBride and Viv Logie of the Greymouth Star