17 Nov 2011

Police to talk to govt departments re. school trip accident

6:36 pm on 17 November 2011

Police say they will speak to two government departments about an incident in which an injured 11-year-old girl was left behind on a school trip in Hawke's Bay.

The Maori immersion school pupil was on a hike with 25 other school children when she fell 11 metres down a bank at Te Reinga, north of Wairoa on Wednesday afternoon.

No one realised she was missing until the group got back to Wairoa.

Sergeant Aubrey Ormond says there had been some confusion as to the girl's whereabouts because the school group was travelling in two separate vehicles - a car and a bus.

He says when a head count was done on the bus and she was missing, no one was sure whether or not she was in the car.

The whole group travelled back to Wairoa where the final head count was done and she was confirmed as missing.

A search was mounted and the girl was found at the bottom of the bank two hours after she had fallen.

Police say they will speak to the Department of Labour Department and the Education Ministry about the incident.

The injured girl was taken by rescue helicopter to Hawke's Bay Hospital where she is in a serious but stable condition in the high-dependency unit.

Sergeant Ormond says she had a lucky escape since the terrain in the area is steep.