24 Sep 2013

Bus full of students crashes near Taumarunui

4:50 am on 24 September 2013

Police say it is lucky only eight people suffered minor to moderate injuries in a bus crash near Taumarunui.

Students and teachers from three Wanganui high schools were on the bus, which crashed into a ditch on State Highway 4, nine kilometres south of Taumarunui about 12.30pm.

They were on the way to a school national Maori speech contest in Hamilton.

The crash scene.


Taupo's Greenlea Rescue Helicopter says it flew a 17-year-old girl to Waikato Hospital with head, chest and abdominal injuries. She was also reported to have a suspected broken arm. Police described her condition as moderate.

Five other students and two teachers had minor injuries.

The helicopter trust says they were taken to Taumarunui hospital by ambulance and police vehicles.

Police say after the bus went into the ditch the passengers and the driver managed to get out through the rear door.

Those that weren't injured were taken to a local hall in Taumarunui and seen by Victim Support until another bus took them home.

Acting Senior Sergeant Grant Alabaster said the crash could have been much worse.

"We're extremely lucky. When you've got a school bus with that many people on it to have crash of any nature, really, to come out with so few hurt out of it, that's luck."

The Serious Crash Unit and Commercial Vehicle Investigation Unit are trying to identify the cause of the crash.