Police have ruled out speed as a factor in the death of 6-year-old Junior Ianuali, who was hit by a car in Porirua on Friday.
The serious crash unit is continuing to investigate the death, in Champion St, Cannons Creek, but a spokesman said speed was no longer being considered as a cause.
Cannons Creek resident Stacey Te Puni, who was one car behind the people-mover that hit Junior, also said the driver was not speeding.
He had slowed down to go through a roundabout, and "would have had to have put his foot down" in order to break the 50kmh speed limit, she said.
"I don't think he was speeding at all.
"He wouldn't have been going more than 40-odd."
She said Junior ran out in front of the car. "There was no warning - the guy wouldn't have been able to put his brakes on."
Jennique Toa Temarama, whose 5-year-old son Jodeci Temarama Ahiao was a friend of Junior, said speed was a recurring problem in the area.
She said the Cannons Creek School community had tried to get speed bumps put along the street to deter people from speeding, but it had not happened.
"Cars always speed through here all the time, especially when it's the weekend and people pick their kids up after school, so people speed to beat the traffic."
The boy's extended family gathered last night to mourn their loss, presided over by Tuvaluan minister the Rev Teatu Fusi. He said the family and community were devastated by the death: "It's tragic, it will be very shocking for them."
The boy's grandfather had been out fishing when the accident happened and returned home to discover what had happened.
Junior's aunty wrote a message on a Porirua Facebook page thanking people for their love and support "at this sad time".
Leuila Mike Iafeta has organising fundraising efforts for the family and said the Porirua community had rallied together.
"Members have volunteered their time to bake, many others have donated goods for the people who are cooking. Many others have made monetary donations.
"This young child has now become a ‘Child of Porirua' because of this tragedy. Adopted into the hearts of all P-Towners. The outpouring of love from the community has been overwhelming."
- © Fairfax NZ News
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