Hitchhiker's arm clipped in darkness

JOHN EDENS
Last updated 05:00 26/12/2013

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A hitchhiker was clipped and hurt by a ute on the Devil's Staircase near Queenstown on Christmas Eve.

Senior Constable Chris Blackford, of Queenstown, said the 20-year-old Tuatapere man was struck south of Wye Creek on State Highway 6 about 1am.

His car had broken down and he was walking south towards Kingston trying to thumb a lift when a ute clipped his outstretched arm, he said.

The ute was described as a black late-model vehicle with a flat deck and it was likely the hitchhiker was hard to see because it was dark and raining.

However, it was likely the ute's driver noticed some kind of impact. The victim was taken to Lakes District Hospital, then discharged with cuts.

The ute passed a stationary red Subaru a short distance before the hitchhiker was clipped and police appealed to the driver, or anyone with information, to call Queenstown station.

Meanwhile, an Australian tourist who told police he did not know what double-yellow lines meant has been forbidden to drive in New Zealand.

A member of the public called police on Monday at 4pm about the man's driving, which included crossing the centre line and poor overtaking in the Kawarau Gorge.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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