Woman charged over Nelson crash that killed champion kayaker Andrew Martin

A woman has been charged over a Nelson crash that claimed the life of champion kayaker Andrew Charles Martin four months ago.

Martin died in a vehicle pile-up on September 27 on State Highway 6 near Whangamoathat also left his daughter Lucy critically injured. His ex-wife Jane was also injured.

The road was closed between Nelson and Rai Valley for several hours.

Martin, a 58-year-old renowned kayak craftsman and kayaker, set up Andrew Martin Kayaks in New Plymouth, then went on to Legend Paddles, before forming Flow Kayaks with fellow world champion multi-sport athlete Richard Ussher, which they had since sold.

Flow’s website said Martin had “competed in nearly every competitive kayaking discipline including representing New Zealand in Slalom, Wildwater racing and Marathon”.

In a statement today, police said a 24-year-old Blenheim woman has been charged with aggravated careless driving causing death in relation to the fatal crash.

She has also been charged with four counts of aggravated careless driving causing injury.

The woman is due to appear in Nelson District Court on February 15.

After Martin’s death, Ussher posted his heartache of Martin’s death on Facebook, writing “Lost for words to hear of the tragic passing of Andrew Martin. A true friend. Rest In Peace mate”.

Ussher today told the Herald he’d known Martin for almost 20 years after he had moved to Nelson from New Plymouth.

“All round the country, especially in the paddling and multisport communities, he touched a lot of people and obviously he was an exceptional athlete in his own right as well.

“He certainly leaves a big hole in those communities and leaves a pretty amazing legacy to the sport as well.”

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