Child's death 'devastates' rescuers

05:09, Mar 08 2014

A child has died in an incident in the Manuka Gorge area, near Balclutha, last night. 

Jonathan James Kerr, aged 8, of Milton died during the incident at a logging site at 5.15pm.

The incident involved a truck belonging to a South Otago contracting company, Wynyard Transport, which has bases in Milton and Balclutha, a Manuka Gorge resident said.

A spokesman from the company referred Stuff to the police.

"I could comment but not while there is an investigation going on. I don't want to jeopardise what comes out of it." 

A South Otago fire service officer who won't be named said the incident was "a freak accident" and "not very nice".

He declined to comment further.


Dunedin Police senior sergeant Ed Baker would not confirm reports it involved a boy getting his head caught in a car window.

The matter was now out of police hands and being dealt with by the Coroner, he said.

A vehicle removed from the site would undergo forensic and electrical testing. This may take several days.

Police personnel involved in the investigaton were "very upset" by the incident.

"They're all devastated," Mr Baker said.

The Southland Times