Tests shed light on mystery object

Rutger Hale
Rutger Hale
The mystery object that killed Rutger Hale as he drove near Wanaka last year contained stainless steel used in vehicle parts, tests have revealed.

The object, which has not been located, fatally injured Mr Hale (22) on October 24 when it crashed through the windscreen of his car as he drove between Lake Hawea and Wanaka. 

It has never been found but fragments recovered from the crashed car were sent to both ESR and the University of Otago for analysis.

The tests revealed that the unknown object was made of or contained fragments of stainless steel of a common grade used in vehicle parts and other everyday items such as tools and cookware.

The object also comprised common minerals naturally occurring in soil or dirt in the South Island.

Police said in a statement today the case remains open and if any new information comes to hand it will be investigated further.

"Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Rutger Hale as we are at this stage unfortunately unable to progress the case to any satisfactory conclusion," says Detective Senior Sergeant Malcolm Inglis.

Police say that investigation findings will now be referred to the coroner.