Fatal fleeing driver incident near Hope
"Fatal fleeing driver incident near Hope"
Please attribute to Superintendent Mike Johnson, Tasman District Commander:
Three people have died early this morning following an incident on State Highway 6 near Hope.
Around 5:40am Police were conducting enquiries to locate a wanted person.
As part of these enquiries Police attempted to stop a vehicle on Gladstone Road, Richmond.
The car failed to stop and fled towards State Highway 6, overtaking a truck and moving onto the wrong side of the road where it crashed into another vehicle that was travelling north.
Tragically three people have died as a result, two of the deceased were from the fleeing vehicle and the third person was an innocent member of the public.
An outcome like this is the last thing Police want to see.
We now have three families who have lost members and our thoughts are with them during this difficult time.
We are currently working to notify and support their next of kin, as well as supporting our staff involved.
These incidents are always extremely testing for Police.
They are fast-moving, unpredictable and high pressure situations that require quick judgements.
Ultimately, Police are here to protect our community. Our staff must strike a balance between the responsibility to protect life and the duty to enforce the law.
There will be an internal investigation regarding the pursuit and the Independent Police Conduct Authority has also been formally notified, both of which are standard procedure.
A Serious Crash Unit investigation is also underway to establish the full circumstances of the crash.