Three dead, two critically hurt, after two crashes in Waikato

Police were called to two serious crashes in the region on Monday afternoon.

RICKY WILSON/Stuff

Police were called to two serious crashes in the region on Monday afternoon.

Three people have died and two are in a critical condition after two separate crashes in Waikato – while a section of SH1 has been closed by a 25-tonne chemical spill.

A two-vehicle crash in Rangiriri left two dead and two in a critical condition, while a crash between a car and a tanker carrying a hazardous substance in Tirau killed one person.

The crash on Rodda Road in Rangiriri, about 4:10pm on Monday, left diversions in place as police examined the scene. The road is likely to remain closed for some time.

Fire and Emergency Shift Manager Josh Penefather said on arrival three people were trapped and FENZ pulled them out using rescue tools.

Meanwhile, the collisions on SH1 in Tirau, at Putāruru, is likely to close the road until Tuesday morning due to a significant chemical spill, Waka Kotahi NZTA said.

Penefather said the crash involved a tanker carrying approximately 25 tonnes of hydrogen peroxide.

“The tanker has rolled and the hydrogen peroxide is leaking”, he said.

Fire and Emergency are still at the scene, he said, as the truck is still slowly leaking.

If any members of the public feel unwell, they should call Healthline, Pennefather said.

Bronwyn McGovern lives near the crash site on SH1 at Putāruru and said there were “always” crashes in the area.

She earlier heard “a lot of emergency services” headed towards the site, but could not see the scene itself as she lived about half a kilometre away.

Police were called to the crash about 3pm on Monday. Diversions were in place and drivers asked to avoid the area.

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