Rotorua Police investigate tree incident where a woman died

By Te Kāea
  • Waikato/Bay of Plenty

Police are investigating, following the death of a Rotorua woman who died when a tree fell on her during severe weather on Wednesday. 

Final prayers have been conducted, as the body of the giant oak tree is dismantled.

Rotorua's Mayor Steve Chadwick says, “My condolences to the family that lost their loved one. Yeah, pretty tragic.”

The Mayor has issued her condolences to the grieving family. Following the death of a woman who died while when the 150-year-old Oak tree fell on Arawa St in Rotorua in the storm that swept the country.

Tree Specialist, Tom Rika isn't surprised.  He expressed concerns about the tree concerned two months ago.

“We drive past it every day so we just notice, because of what we do every day that the bracings that were installed many years ago looked to us like they were starting to fail.”

In a statement, Rotorua Lakes Councils Acting Chief Executive officer, Craig Tiriana said, "Following concerns from a local tree specialist in recent months about bracing in the tree, another inspection was done by the Council's regular contractor. In late September/early October bracing was replaced and some branch reduction was also undertaken. I can't comment on the actual process to make it safe because I didn't climb it.”

But Mr Rika had a feeling, it was only a matter of time.

“I knew it was only a matter of time. I've driven past since it fell and it's certainly rotten.”

Police say the circumstances surrounding the death are being been investigated and the matter will be referred to the coroner.