Boy racer crashes into minister Nick Smith's Nelson home
A car clocked speeding at more than 130kmh was left dangling from a tree after it crashed into Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith's property.
The incident woke the minister, his wife and four children in their Nelson home at 1am on Sunday.
"Heard an awful crash that woke everybody in the house, went outside and immediately saw the car and called an ambulance," Smith said.
The white sedan was a mangled mess. It had cleared the guard rail on the bend in Waimea Rd, knocked down two trees, and was partially suspended in a fern in Smith's garden, about two metres from his house.
"He landed the car still hanging in a fern. Actually, the trees I'm sure softened the impact and was probably a lifesaver for him," Smith said.
"Looking at the car I initially thought we might be dealing with the awful tragedy of a fatality."
Neighbours were on the scene quickly and police and ambulance arrived promptly, Smith said.
He said police had clocked the car doing 130kmh in a 50kmh zone and running a red light in Stoke before it lost control and crashed.
A police spokesperson said police received reports that two cars were speeding along Main Rd, Stoke, about 1am.
As an officer was on route to the job, one of the cars ran a red light and was clocked driving at 134kmh.
"Police flashed their lights but did not initiate a pursuit. The car crashed nearby and the officer was close behind."
The 20-year-old driver was out of the car when police arrived.
"He was conscious and talking and was taken to hospital for assessment. He did not have serious injuries."
He has been charged with driving while disqualified and reckless driving and will appear in court in October.
Police were awaiting the results of a blood test and said it was possible more charges would be laid.
Smith said he saw bottles of alcohol fall out of the car and the driver seemed to be intoxicated.
He said it was a "miracle" that the driver only suffered minor injuries.
"It's almost a death wish," Smith said
"Trees, houses, cars can be fixed ... lives can't. It's only through the grace of God that it wasn't a fatality."
Smith, who is the MP for Nelson, said he has had constituency work on issues with boy racers in the past.
"It just brings home to me, how silly some young people can be in a combination with cars and alcohol."
Online, Smith lamented the "boy racer problem" had "hit home".
He posted pictures of the car wreck hanging precariously in the trees in front of his house.
He said his Sunday activities would consist of clearing trees the were felled in the incident and blocking his garage.