Trucks crash near Matamata

UPDATE 1PM: A section of State Highway 27 near Matamata has reopened after two trucks, one carrying gas cylinders, collided early today.

The head-on crash between a truck and truck and trailer unit occurred about 6.10am on SH27 between Taihoa South Rd and the intersection with SH29 near Hinuera.


Emergency services at the scene of a head-on truck crash in Matamata.

Inspector Rob Lindsay says initial investigations are that a southbound truck travelling on SH27 has swerved to avoid colliding with the rear of a B-train it had been following that was braking.

“As it has swerved it has gone into the path of an oncoming second B-train and they collided head on near the Kneebone Bridge.

"The northbound B-train was carrying six pellets of upright gas cylinders, which are quite volatile and the area is been made safe by fire-fighters.”

One of the drivers of one of the trucks was trapped for 1.5hours before being freed by the fire service with cutting equipment.

The Westpac rescue helicopter was called to the scene to transported the driver to Waikato Hospital with serious leg injuries.

The other driver was able to remove himself from the cab.

Earlier:

Inspector Rob Lindsay says the driver of one truck is trapped and emergency services are working to get him out.

Rob says the other driver was able to extract himself from the cab of his truck.

“Emergency services are present and working to remove the trapped driver, who is seriously injured and an air ambulance helicopter is on the way to the scene.  

“Given the risks associated with the gas canisters cargo and a significant salvage operation being required road diversions have been put in place and motorists are being asked to avoid the area.”

Greerton-based hazardous materials unit has also been called to the scene as one of the trucks contains hazardous materials, says Northern Fire Communications centre shift manager Jarron Phillips.

The crash is still under investigation by the Commercial Vehicle Investigation Unit.