Desert Rd crash driver a 'lifelong truckie'

MIKE WATSON
Last updated 13:54 09/11/2012
Crash scene
MAURICE COSTELLO/Fairfax NZ

'BOMB SITE': The crash scene at Waihohonu Stream, on State Highway 1.

Relevant offers

National

Hundreds of eels found dead in Marlborough creek $7.1 million Lotto win in Tauranga Man critical after being pinned under a 15-tonne truck in Northland An open letter to TPP protesters from Steven Joyce Kiwi man's creative solution to finding a woman for Valentine's Day Waist trainers: investing in eating disorders Homicide inquiry launched after body found near Whangarei Christchurch school gets behind #buythisbeachNZ Take a look behind the scenes of a late night Energy City Cabs taxi ride in Taranaki Maths and science teachers in 'twilight' or back from retirement

A truck driver who died after the unit he was driving crashed on the Desert Road yesterday has been described as a committed lifelong truckie.

He was this afternoon named by his family as Dave Budge.

Budge was driving for Mainfreight when his southbound truck crashed down a riverbank about 4.30am on Thursday morning, 25 kilometres south of Turangi.

"All his friends knew him as Budgie. He was a through-and-through truckie," Budge's niece, Jacinda Kirtlan said.

Budge hailed originally from Titahi Bay and lived his life in the Wellington region with his partner.

Family members had gathered in Turangi to be as close as possible to Budge following the accident.

"'Keep on truckin' was a favourite saying of his," Kirtlan said.

She said the family was in a state of shock and plans had yet to be finalised for a funeral service in Wellington.

"As a family we want to thank Mainfreight, the police and his truck-driving mates. Everyone has been fantastic to us," Kirtlan said.

Police divers spent most of Thursday afternoon searching beneath and around the wreckage of the 20-tonne unit for Budge.

Swift swirling currents and narrow channels beneath the Waihohonu Stream bridge made earlier searches for Budge's body difficult.

Ad Feedback

- The Dominion Post

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content