Child fights head injuries after fatal bus smash

Last updated 10:21 01/03/2013

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A nine-year-old boy is today battling severe head injuries after a fatal bus crash in South Auckland yesterday.

An 88-year-old man was killed, and two children, fellow passengers and a bus driver severely injured when the Howick and Eastern bus crashed at 3pm in Manurewa.

The boy is being treated at Middlemore Hospital and a 12-year-old girl was hospitalised with a broken leg and other injuries.

The driver also received "substantial injuries", Counties Manukau police spokeswoman Ana-Mari Gates-Bowey said.

Police will release the name of the deceased man once his family has been told of his death.

"The bus was travelling down Hill Rd, it's under investigation, but it looks like the bus lost control at a right hand bend and collided with a taxi," Gates-Bowey said.

The taxi driver and the taxi passenger were lucky to escape unscathed after the bus crashed into the side of the vehicle as it was coming the other way.

Residents said that if the bus not hit the tree it would subsequently have come to a stop in an empty section.

They said buses often came around the corner at speed and they were not surprised there had been a crash.

However, the police serious crash unit said they had not yet come to any conclusions and the driver may have suffered a medical event.

One resident said the corner on which the crash occurred was known as one where vehicles skidded.

"It is a bad corner," said the woman who went to the scene soon after the crash.

"It was strange really," she said.

"The bus was right across the road."

Bus company general manager Sheryll Otway said her firm was doing all it could to help the families of the injured.

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