Mother, son serious after crash
A Blenheim woman and her 4-year-old son are in hospital after a head-on crash near Havelock yesterday morning.
The 29-year-old woman was cut from her car and airlifted to Nelson Hospital along with her son about 9.30am.
A hospital spokeswoman said this morning that the woman was in a stable condition in the intensive care unit at Nelson Hospital.
Her son had been transferred to Christchurch. He is in a stable condition in intesive care this morning.
The woman was driving south towards Blenheim on State Highway 6 in a white Holden Commodore with her son in the passenger seat when it is believed the car she was driving crossed the centre line about 500 metres outside Havelock township on the Nelson side.
The driver of an Isuzu tanker truck involved in the crash said the car ricocheted off the truck he was driving and crashed head-on into a TNL Freight truck behind him.
He was "a bit shaken", but neither he nor the other truck driver were injured, he said.
Havelock Volunteer Fire Brigade deputy chief fire officer Peter Le Cheminant said firefighters were called out at 8.20am and worked for about 20 minutes to cut the woman from the car. She had been wedged between the dashboard and the seat. Her son was in a booster seat and had not been trapped.
The crew removed the entire driver's side of the car then pushed the dashboard off the woman's legs to free them.
She had serious injuries to her lower body and torso and was in a lot of pain after the front of the car had closed in on her, Mr Le Cheminant said.
"She had horrendous injuries, I believe."
Both the woman and the child were wearing seatbelts, which worked like "magic", Mr Le Cheminant said.
"If they weren't wearing their seatbelts, they probably would have been dead," he said.
St John ambulance team manager Rebecca Lee said the woman and child were both conscious and treated at the scene for about 30 minutes before being taken by the Nelson Marlborough Rescue Helicopter to Nelson Hospital.
The woman had serious injuries, including multiple fractures to her right arm and right ankle, as well as cuts to her left leg. She also had chest injuries. Her son had chest and head injuries.
PC Media owner Lee Harper, of Blenheim made the 111 call after he swerved and braked to avoid being hit by the woman's car.
He was driving towards Nelson when he saw the white vehicle cross the centre line and clip the truck in front of him, before it spun out of control and hit the truck behind him head-on.
Senior Constable Paul McKenzie, of Blenheim police, said police were investigating the accident.
There were traffic delays on both sides of the town on the road between Havelock and Nelson.
One lane reopened just after 9am.
The Marlborough Express