17 Dec 2012

Coroner's findings on beach crash

12:00 pm on 17 December 2012

Northland Coroner Brandt Shortland has found that a man killed in a crash on 90 Mile Beach was not wearing a seatbelt and was probably driving too fast.

Thomas Walker, 27, died in May 2009 when the vehicle he was driving went into a spin on wet sand, and flipped and rolled, throwing him out.

Mr Walker's cousin had to run 2km for help because there is no cell phone reception on the beach, - leaving his brother and Mr Walker where they lay, badly hurt.

By the time he returned Mr Thomas was dead of head and chest injuries.

Mr Shortland said traces of cannabis were found in Mr Walker's system, but it was more apparent that he had not been driving to the conditions.

He said driving on 90 Mile beach can be dangerous and people should avoid driving on it when the tide is coming in.