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Fatal crash investigation ongoing

An investigation is continuing into a crash near Whakatane yesterday that left one person dead.

The collision occurred at 5.45am, 14kms north of Whakatane on Thornton Road when a northbound vehicle left the road and collided with a tree, catching on fire. Police, Fire and St.John staff attended the scene.

The road was closed completely for about two hours and then one lane was reopened to allow some traffic flow while emergency services finished their work at the scene.

Police believe that the driver and sole occupant of the vehicle was a man in his 20s from Auckland and have been liaising with the man’s family. Formal confirmation of his identity however is likely to take a couple of days and he will not be named until Police have that confirmation.

The investigation into the cause will take some time but early indications are that speed was a likely factor.

ENDS

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