Ngaruawahia fatal crash investigation continues

  • Waikato/Bay of Plenty

Police are continuing their investigation into the circumstances of a car crash that claimed the life of an 11-year-old boy in Ngaruawahia on Friday 18 November 2016. 

Six other young people were injured in the single vehicle crash on Durham Street.

“The small town has been greatly affected by this tragedy and police are grateful for the cooperation of all those involved, who are assisting with the investigation," says Detective Sergeant Mata John, Western Waikato CIB.

“This is an absolute tragedy for a number of families and the community as a whole.  All seven occupants of the car are local to the area. Most of them are related, either as siblings or cousins.  This investigation will be a long process, particularly as young children are involved.”

The deceased was identified as Nikau Tamati, one of seven children who were travelling in the van when the accident occurred. He was remembered as a talented musician who enjoyed playing the drums. Tamati was later farewelled at Turangawaewae Marae.

The van’s driver was identified by police as a 14-year-old boy, who also sustained injuries along with the vehicle’s other occupants.

“We have found that at this time of heartbreak, the community has really shown its strength in supporting all those affected by the incident,” says Detective Sergeant John.