Terrifying dashcam footage shows logging truck striking vehicle after running red light

A Kiwi builder has shared a terrifying video showing a logging truck striking the front of his vehicle after it ran a red light.

The collision happened on February 15 at the State Highway 1 and Central Avenue intersection in Whangarei.

Footage shows one logging truck driving through the intersection on what was presumably an orange or even red light since the adjacent lights turn green as they're passing through. Then as the driver begins moving forward after their light turns green, a second logging truck ploughs through the intersection and hits the front of their car. This second truck belongs to Aztec Forestry Transport Developments.

The builder, who sent his dashcam footage of the incident to Newshub, says logging trucks running lights "ages" after they've gone red is a "constant issue" in Whangarei.

"In the footage if I had not hesitated for the first truck running the red I would have been T-boned by the second truck clearly doing over 50km/h and in the rain," he says.

"Every set of lights along the Western Hills bypass [SH1] has constantly got logging trucks doing this.

"Something needs to be done to stop this ever happening again."

A picture the builder sent shows the front of his truck torn apart and bullbars ripped from the car.

Terrifying dashcam footage shows logging truck striking vehicle after running red light
Photo credit: Supplied

A spokesperson for Aztec Forestry Transport Developments says it is "very sorry" to any members of the public that this incident caused harm to.

While the footage is graphic and shows the seriousness of what happened, they say, what isn't shown is the events beforehand that caused their driver to run the red light.

"In short, our driver was travelling south, there were two vehicles in front of him in the right lane. The first of those vehicles indicated to turn right and slowed down abruptly. The second vehicle then swerved into our driver's lane (to avoid driving into the rear of the first car), causing the Aztec driver to take evasive action and swerve left," the spokesperson tells Newshub.

"By the time that he looked up (after he had adjusted and checked all of his mirrors to check if he hit anything on his left) he saw that the lights were red, but at this point, he was already committed to crossing."

The spokesperson believes that under these circumstances, harsh braking may have led to "a more damaging outcome" since the roads were wet and slippery at the time of the incident.

"Speed was not a contributing factor in this incident, but more external actions that were beyond his control (other drivers' behaviour) that caused his inattention to the upcoming traffic lights."

The Police's commercial vehicle safety team (CVST) attended the incident where they breath-tested the driver and the vehicle was inspected for any faults, of which nothing was found, the Aztec spokesperson says.

The driver, who is a contractor for Aztec, has accepted responsibility for this incident and has since been fined, they added. They have also had an in-cab assessment with the company's driver trainer.

"Aztec will be using this incident as a learning tool for our other drivers. We have also sent out an alert company-wide addressing traffic lights and intersections, and the driver involved will be

presenting back to the team at our next health and safety meeting, so that as a group we can

determine the five whys of this incident and what could have been done to avoid it."

A police spokesperson says they receive "many" complaints for drivers running red lights in Whangarei.

"It continues to be one of the areas police staff focus on, particularly at intersections with a history of crashes," they say.

"If you see a vehicle run a red light, or driving in a dangerous manner, please report it to police as soon as it is safe to do so. You can also report it via *555."

More information on how the public can report unsafe driving is available here.  

The spokesperson added further enquiries into this incident are ongoing.