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Two critically injured in Canterbury crash

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 22/02/2017

Two people have suffered critical injuries after a bus carrying tourists was involved in a collision with a car and went down a bank near Akaroa in Canterbury.

They have been flown by rescue helicopter to Christchurch Hospital.

St John say five others have serious injuries and another person has moderate injuries, and they have been taken to hospital either by helicopter or road ambulance.

A further 26 people with minor injuries or who were unhurt are being taken by a different bus to Akaroa Fire Station, where they will be further assessed by St John personnel.

The crash happened near the intersection of Summit Road and Christchurch Akaroa Road late on Wednesday afternoon.

Police have been told there were 32 people on the bus, which was carrying passengers from a cruise ship anchored in Akaroa Harbour.

The harbour's ship schedule shows the Celebrity Solstice arriving earlier on Wednesday.

Senior Sergeant Vaughn Lapslie says the nationality of the passengers was not yet available.

He says there are cordons on State Highway 75 into and out of Akaroa and motorists are advised to use Pigeon Bay Road instead to rejoin Summit Road.

The diversion is suitable for light vehicles but not for trucks.

Sen Sgt Lapslie says the police commercial vehicle investigation unit and serious crash unit will investigate the incident.

The lotion of the bus will be guarded overnight to preserve the scene for investigators.

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