NZTA says no fault with Cromwell roundabout as police investigate logging truck tip

by Kim Bowden - Jun 26, 2024

The New Zealand Transport Agency says a road fault at a roundabout near Cromwell where a logging truck tipped over last week was fixed well before the incident.

However, local police have confirmed the force's Commercial Vehicle Safety Team is investigating the matter.

The truck was the only vehicle involved in the incident at the intersection of States Highway 6 and 8B.

It appeared to have been travelling on State Highway Six towards Luggate from Queenstown, and it landed on the right-hand side of the road, where traffic would be coming from Luggate towards Queenstown.

"It's fortunate there were only minor injuries involved," police say.

The roundabout was ripped up and relaid not long after initially being constructed due to a fault with the camber, or gradient, of the road.

The flaw was missed by the contractor during construction, despite quality assurance checks having been undertaken, and truck drivers instead raised concerns after using the roundabout when it was provisionally opened over winter in 2022.

A spokesperson for NZTA's Safer Commercial Transport team says the camber was corrected in response to this information, and this is the first crash to have been reported on the roundabout since it opened.

The spokesperson says the Commercial Vehicle Safety Team within the police force will be investigating the incident from the driver’s point of view, attempting to answer how the roll occurred and why.

At this stage, they have received no information regarding the cause of the crash, and there are no cameras at the site to help with this.

"Once NZTA’s regulatory team has received the police final report and analysis of the company vehicle maintenance history, a decision will be made regarding any follow up by ourselves.

"As well as the regulatory role, NZTA’s highway maintenance people locally will have checked this section of highway to ensure it was safe for drivers to use given that a crash occurred."

The truck blocked one lane of the roundabout, and highway detours were in place while a local hiab operator worked to remove logs from the truck and right it.

Main image: A hiab operator works to remove logs from a rolled truck and trailer on State Highway Six in Cromwell, Wednesday, June 19, 2024.

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