The occupants of three vehicles have escaped serious harm after a crash at one of Rotorua's most dangerous intersections.

Emergency services were called to the crash at the intersection of Hemo Rd (SH5) and Old Taupo Rd about 4.40pm yesterday.

A police spokesman said three cars were involved.

One person suffered minor injuries but did not require hospitalisation, an ambulance spokeswoman said.

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A ute had ended up on its side, while a station wagon and sedan were also damaged. Southbound traffic was diverted onto a grass verge outside Te Puia to pass by the crash scene, while north bound traffic was turned onto Old Taupo Rd. There were also reports of diesel spilled on the road.

Last month the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) announced it would spend an estimated $8.1 million on a new roundabout for the notorious intersection, which was rated as the fourth most dangerous in the country.

This intersection has a poor crash history with the most common cause being poor observation or misjudgment of the speed of an approaching vehicle

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In late 2014 the speed limit approaching the intersection was lowered from 80km/h to 70km/h.

The centre island will have a diameter of 50m and the roundabout itself will have three underpasses catering for cyclists and pedestrians.

About 15,000 vehicles travel through this intersection every day, 10 per cent of which are heavy vehicles. According to an NZTA report the design for the roundabout was complete and preliminary works were expected to get under way early this year, "although this is dependent on a number of factors, including property purchase".

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