The Napier-Taupo road reopened this afternoon after four cars crashed at 12.50pm today.

The fire service freed trapped motorists. Eight people, one in a critical condition, were taken to hospital. The Lowe Corporation Rescue Helicopter took a 59 year old Eskdale woman to Hawke's Bay Hospital with with multiple serious injuries. Last night she was in a critical condition.

St John transported a nine-year-old girl and a woman in her 30s who were last night in a stable condition.

Five others have been discharged.

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The crash was near the intersection of Glengarry Rd and State Highway 5, on the Napier side of Te Pohue. Police said this evening that the road reopened at about 4pm after being closed for several hours.

Emergency services arrived at the scene where it appeared two cars collided head on and two others lost control.