Police say driver was distracted

Driver inattention is being blamed as the cause of a Dutch tourist crashing his van after crossing the centre line and rolling it four times near Tarras yesterday.

Sergeant Simon Paget, of Cromwell, said it was fortunate there was no traffic in the oncoming lane at the time of the crash.

''An incident like this illustrates how only a moment's distraction while driving can have serious consequences,'' Mr Paget said.

The 26-year-old driver, who was en route to Lake Tekapo from Wanaka, will face a charge of careless use of a motor vehicle when he appears in the Queenstown District Court on November 27.

The Southland Times