Motorcyclist critical after Paeroa crash

JENNA LYNCH
Last updated 05:00 18/02/2013

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Motorcyclist Lance Lowe is fighting for his life in Auckland Hospital after being seriously injured at the annual Paeroa Battle of the Streets race.

Mr Lowe came off his motorbike about 10.30am before the race even started and suffered critical injuries when he was hit by another motorbike.

Mr Lowe was airlifted to Auckland Hospital in a critical condition.

Freelance journalist Andy McGechan, who was watching the race, said although Mr Lowe wasn't a "top three" motorcyclist, he was well-known in the motor-racing community for being "hardcase".

"He's certainly well-loved," he said. "He was always doing wheelies and getting told off by the organisers."

The race was delayed by an hour following the accident.

St John northern communications shift manager Norm Ngatai said as the event was high-risk, the Auckland Westpac Rescue Helicopter was stationed at the event all day with medical sites set up at various points on the track.

"We have multiple areas set up, called sectors, and all those sectors are manned by highly skilled St John officers," he said.

Mr Lowe was not the only motorcyclist to be injured in the Waikato at the weekend.

A serious motorbike accident in Whangamata saw a 48-year-old man taken by ambulance to the Whangamata Medical Centre with serious shoulder and chest injuries.

The man was carrying a passenger who suffered minor injuries. The accident occurred on Tairua Rd between September Rd and Port Rd just before 10.20am.

Meanwhile, a 40-year-old man, believed to be en route to Battle of the Streets, was also flown to Waikato Hospital on Saturday afternoon after coming off his motorbike.

Mr Ngatai said the man was unconscious when St John officers arrived. He was flown by Auckland Westpac Rescue Helicopter to Waikato Hospital with serious back and hand injuries.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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