It was one of a series of crashes on the region's roads yesterday.
The crash happened on State Highway 29 between Redwood Lane and Gargan Rd about 4.55pm yesterday and blocked the road, backing up as far as the intersection of State Highways 29 and 36.
Tauranga acting Senior Sergeant Owen O'Brien said one person was travelling towards Tauranga in a white Nissan car when it crossed the centre line and crashed into a grey van which was heading towards Hamilton. There were five people in the van.
The two halves of the car were on opposite sides of the road when the Bay of Plenty Times arrived.
The front of the van was crushed and the wheels buckled under.
A St John spokesperson said a 50-year-old woman was taken to Tauranga Hospital with multiple injuries. Three other people were taken to hospital with minor injuries.
Two lanes were opened and traffic began to move again at about 5.30pm.
Both cars were towed away.
Emergency workers later went to an accident in Paengaroa where one motorist crashed into a ditch.
Inspector Willy Taylor said police, fire and ambulance staff were called to the crash at the intersection of State Highway 2 and 33 about 6.55pm. No one was injured.
Emergency workers earlier attended another crash outside the Caltex station on Welcome Bay Rd about 3.45pm.
Constable Ben Dickinson said a Swedish tourist was taking three children to the skate park when she turned into the path of an oncoming car.
A red car travelling along Welcome Bay Rd T-boned her pink car.
Ambulance staff checked the five people involved at the scene. Mr Dickinson said the children were wearing seatbelts and bike helmets.
A pair of tourists face charges after they and a 72-year-old man on a scooter crashed at the intersection of Ngatai Rd and Bureta Rd about 11.30am yesterday.
The 72-year-old man was taken to hospital with back pain.
Sergeant Nigel Ramsden said the rental car driver pulled out from Bureta Rd in front of the man riding his scooter north on Ngatai Rd.
The rental car received damage to its right side and was towed from the scene.
Mr Ramsden said charges would be laid but it was too early to determine exactly what they would be.