Matamata police are seeking assistance in identifying a utility vehicle that failed to stop after colliding with an ambulance carrying a patient with head injuries late yesterday afternoon.
The crash occurred just after 5.00pm on Hinuera Road, 5kms south of Matamata near the intersection with Hopkins Road. The ambulance was transporting the patient to Waikato hospital from Matamata and was travelling below the speed limit with its flashing lights activated. The northbound utility vehicle appeared to lose control on a bend on the otherwise straight road, completely crossed the oncoming lane and struck the ambulance on the left hand side. The ambulance was damaged to the extent that it could not continue and is now out of commission. The utility vehicle carried on towards Matamata without stopping.
Fortunately the ambulance driver was able to slow to approximately 20km/h before impact and no further injury was caused to the patient. None of the ambulance crew were reported to be injured. Another ambulance had to be dispatched to take over the transport.
Police want to speak to the driver of a dark grey or blue, late model Toyota Hilux utility vehicle. The vehicle has a flat deck with a dog box on the back and is quite distinctive. It is likely to have some frontal damage and possibly further damage down the left hand side.
Anyone recognising the vehicle's description or knowing its whereabouts is asked to contact the Matamata police.