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Double fatality at Mangatainoka junction

Road markings denote the scene of the accident. PHOTO/BUSH TELEGRAPH

2019 road toll passes 100

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Two people, believed to be from Pahiatua, died in a two-vehicle crash in Mangatainoka on Thursday night.

Their deaths added to a horrific week on New Zealand roads in which 26 lives had been lost by Friday.

It’s believed one of the victims was 12 years old.

The collision, which happened around 5.45pm near the Mara St intersection on State Highway 2, close to the Tui Brewery, also had one person critically injured and two people seriously injured.

St John said three ambulances and two helicopters had been sent to the scene.

Life Flight confirmed that one person was airlifted by helicopter to Wellington Hospital.

The New Zealand Transport Agency put a detour in place for northbound traffic along Carisbrook Rd, Middle Rd and Kohinui Rd that lasted for several hours.

One woman the Times-Age spoke to, said people often sped in the area the crash happened.

“The speed through here is 70 kilometres per hour right from cemetery turn-off through to the Mangatainoka School. People go much faster than that here. It should be 50 kilometres per hour.”

A man who lives nearby said he heard a bang but thought it was an innocuous sound from a neighbouring property.

“When the helicopters started flying in, that’s when I knew it was serious,” he said.

Another man said two children had been injured in the crash.

While the crash happened in the Tararua District, Wairarapa has already experienced three road deaths this year.

The third, the death of New Zealand Army gunner Andrew Rance happened just last week.

Six people died as the result of road crashes in the region last year.

Last week’s carnage on the roads has pushed New Zealand’s road toll for the year to 110.

Last year’s road toll stood at 379, the worst year since 2009.

The Mangatainoka accident is being investigated by the police serious crash unit.

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