A woman in her late 40s died last night when her car hit a
power pole on the East Coast.
Police, fire crews from the Patutahi volunteer brigade and
Gisborne, along with St John Ambulance and power faults staff
were called out about 7pm.
The woman's car failed to take a corner at Patutahi, 15km
inland from Gisborne, and smashed side-on into the concrete
The impact brought down the pole and powerlines and the car
was extensively damaged.
"The point of impact between the car and the pole was right
in the middle of the driver's side door," said Senior Station
Officer John Haggland.
"The lady didn't stand a chance."
Police said the danger caused by the fallen power lines
prevented immediate rescue attempts. However, it appeared the
woman might have died instantly.
"The pole broke off at ground level and fell into a nearby
paddock, with the lines down around the car," Mr Haggland
"It had been raining, everything was wet, and it was too
risky for us to attempt to get inside the vehicle until
faults staff arrived to isolate the power."
That happened about 15 minutes after the first emergency
St John Ambulance officers got inside the vehicle and
pronounced the woman deceased.
"The woman's body was removed from the vehicle about two
Mr Haggland said.
She was the sole occupant of the car.
"The cause of the crash is not known at this stage, although
it was raining in the area at the time," police said.
The accident disrupted power supplies to the Patutahi area
for some time.
Police are still advising next of kin and the woman's name
has not yet been released.