A woman was killed and her toddler daughter was seriously injured after being run over by an SUV as the girl’s father changed tire of their vehicle on the highway.

The father stopped their vehicle in the middle of the highway in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, on Wednesday after it faced mechanical problems. As soon as the man’s wife and child got out of the vehicle, they were mowed down by an SUV.

"According to the driver of the vehicle, he was forced to stop in the centre of the N2 due to mechanical problems. When the passenger holding her child exited the vehicle to go to a place of safety, they were struck from behind, by an SUV,” Paul Herbst, spokesperson for IPSS Medical Rescue, told a local news outlet North Glen News.

Paramedics arrived at the scene and declared the mother dead. The toddler was rushed to a local hospital where she remained in a critical condition.

"The child was ejected from the mother’s arms and landed approximately 20 meters away. The mother unfortunately sustained fatal injuries and was declared deceased on the scene. The father was lucky to escape with no injuries," Herbst told the outlet.

Meanwhile, spokesperson for Reaction Unit South Africa (RUSA), Prem Balram, said their members reached the scene after receiving calls from passersby reporting the accident.

"On arrival, paramedics from a private ambulance service were in the process of stabilising the seriously injured infant. Her mother was found lying on the highway approximately 40 metres away from the point of impact. According to the deceased’s husband, they were forced to stop on the third lane after the Jeep Grand Cherokee they were traveling in had a puncture. They got off the vehicle and he was in the process of removing the spare tire when a Land Rover collided into his vehicle," North Glen News quoted Balram, as saying.

The highway was closed for a few hours due to the accident.

Car accident. pixabay