A resident has described the enormous bang heard when a car being chased by police smashed into another vehicle, killing an innocent member of the public in Christchurch on Tuesday morning.
The five occupants of the pursued vehicle have injuries ranging from moderate to critical.
Max Bremner lives just metres away from the scene.
"It sounded like a bomb," he told Newshub. "So we went to the window and looked out.
"I saw a couple of cops running down the road - and then we just watched for 10 minutes."
Bremner said he thought one of the vehicles had hit a power pole.
"In the end I worked out it had been hit on the side."
Police had chased the car for about four minutes through residential streets, after it failed to stop about 4am.
The early morning chase was still in progress when it ended in tragedy. At this stage, no charges have been laid.
Speaking to reporters later on Tuesday morning, Canterbury Metro Commander Superintendent Lane Todd said the innocent driver was taken to hospital with critical injuries, but died soon after.
The incident will be investigated by both the Independent Police Conduct Authority and police investigators.
"The exact nature of the fleeing driver incident is being reviewed and obviously that's part of the wider investigation," Supt Todd told reporters.
"What I can say is they weren't [driving at] horrendous speeds, but they were over the speed limit."