Car plunges into Queenstown ravine


Two men were lucky to survive when their car plunged down a Queenstown ravine early this morning say police.

The men – aged 22 and 24 – were in a Toyota Highlander that careered off Wye Creek Bridge on State Highway 6 sometime between 3am and 5am (Wednesday).

Both men are from the UK but living in Queenstown.

Acting sergeant Phil Hamlin says initial indications are the 24-year-old driver lost control and failed to take a bend on the southern approach to the bridge.

The car crashed through the roadside barrier and through scrub before dropping 30 metres into Wye Creek ravine.

Both men managed to escape from the car, with the 22-year-old able to scramble up to the road and flag down a passing motorist.

The driver sustained leg and possible internal injuries while the passenger had just minor injuries.

“It appears both men were wearing safety belts and these undoubtedly prevented further injuries,” Hamlin says.

“Both men appear to have been extremely lucky.”

The driver was unable to get to the road from the car due to his injuries, so emergency services personnel treated him at the scene.

At first light, at Heliworks helicopter and crew used a strop to lower a paramedic into the ravine and the man was extracted from the creek and transferred by ambulance to hospital.

State Highway 6 traffic was delayed briefly to allow the helicopter to attend and Fire Service staff managed traffic flow.

A police serious crash investigator is en route from Invercargill and enquiries into the crash are continuing.