A young woman had been flown to Wellington Hospital in critical condition after crashing her car into a power pole in Wairarapa.
The crash happened about 9am on State Highway 2 in Clareville, between Carterton and Masterton.
An ambulance spokesman said the woman was aged between 18 and 20 and had been flown by Westpac rescue helicopter with extensive injuries.
Masterton fire station officer Doug Flowerday said fire crews had to pulled the car away from the unstable power pole with chains before trying to extract the woman.
Fire crews used a new technique called "time critical extraction" which used two fire trucks and chains to pull the car off the victim to free her, he said.
It was much faster than traditional methods, allowing crews to get her into the hands of paramedics after about 10 minutes on the scene, he said.
"The whole front of the car had been ripped away on impact of the crash," Flowerday said
The serious crash unit was investigating.
A second crash on State Highway 58 in Wellington about 9am closed the Paremata Haywards Rd for about 45 minutes.
One car had rolled and the driver escaped with minor injuries.
- © Fairfax NZ News