N.Z. crash news devastates

A mother from Satupa'itea in Savai'i is distraught by the news of the apparent passing of her husband, a seasonal worker in New Zealand, on Sunday night following a car crash. 

Vaetasi Selesele Asiata is being said to have died in a car crash that took place in the Mt Maunganui suburb of New Zealand, on the tip of the country’s northern island.

While New Zealand Police confirmed a fatal single-vehicle crash, they said they were unable to confirm the identity of the victim of a crash that left two other people in hospital with moderate injuries. 

Vaetasi’s wife, Lucy Selesele McCarthy, says she is yet to even receive official confirmation that her husband was the man who had been fatally wounded in the crash. 

But she has been overwhelmed by condolence messages since Sunday and says that she still cannot believe the possibility that her husband has gone. 

Her husband had been away from home for ten months, Lucy said. 

He was in New Zealand as a seasonal worker, and was supposed to return back home to his wife and daughter at the end of the year. 

The mother-of-one was in tears when she spoke to the Samoa Observer. 

"Right now, I am not in the right mind to say anything to anyone," she said. 

"I do not want to talk about it as I still can not accept or believe what happened."

Lucy said her world fell apart when she first found out about what happened. 

"I first found out (about what happened) on Facebook," she said through tears. 

"I have not seen his face or any evidence that he is gone, the people in New Zealand have not contacted me officially."

She recalled the last time she spoke to her husband was Sunday afternoon. 

"We talked on Sunday and that is the last we heard from him. He has not texted," she said. 

The New Zealand Police media team confirmed a fatality had occurred in the area on Sunday night. 

"The single vehicle crash was reported to Police at 5pm," Police said in a statement. 

"Two other people were injured in the crash suffering moderate to serious injuries. Four other passengers were medically checked but are not seriously injured.

"Those injured have been transported to hospital."

Police in N.Z are now seeking witnesses to the crash. 

However, New Zealand Police Media could not confirm the identity of the deceased. 

"Police is not yet in a position to release the name of the person who died - we will do so proactively when able," responding to queries from the Samoa Observer Newspaper. 

Condolence messages from families and friends of both Lucy and Vaetasi Selesele Asiata were all over Facebook since Monday morning. 

Attempts to seek a comment from the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Labour on Monday were not returned as of press time. 

Bg pattern light


Subscribe to Samoa Observer Online

Enjoy access to over a thousand articles per month, on any device as well as feature-length investigative articles.

Ready to signup?