Driver in fatal Coromandel crash to pay $5k to victim's mum

  • 15/01/2018
Melanie Dangel, 19, died in hospital a week after the crash.
Melanie Dangel, 19, died in hospital a week after the crash. Photo credit: Thames Fire Brigade

A German student has been ordered to pay an emotional harm reparation of $5000 after his girlfriend died following a car accident on the Coromandel Peninsula last year.

Felix Eisele, 19, appeared in Thames District Court on Monday after earlier admitting one charge of careless driving causing death.

He was driving a rented Nissan when he pulled out in front of a truck at the intersection of State Highway 25 and Hauraki Road on November 24.

His passenger and girlfriend Melanie Dangel, 19, later died from her injuries in Waikato Hospital.

The pair had left Hamilton that morning, heading for Hot Water Beach, when the crash occurred just before 11am.

Eisele had only recently got his licence and had limited driving experience.

His lawyer Simon Lance on Monday said that his client took the full brunt on the impact from the truck, which knocked him out and couldn't recall anything about the accident.

"Felix is deeply remorseful and traumatised by what happening, describing it as the worst day of his life," Mr Lance said.

"He wishes he could change places with Melanie and it's something he will regret for the rest of his life."

In passing sentence, Judge Glen Marshall described Mr Eisele's decision as a lapse in concentration which lead to serious consequences.

"I accept that you're going to live with this for the rest of your life as this accident had a ripple effect on a number of people."

He disqualified the German national from driving or holding a driver's licence in New Zealand for 18 months, in addition to the $5000 in emotional harm reparation he must pay to the victim's mother.

NZN