An hour-long police pursuit has ended dramatically with the driver escaping from his crushed car, jumping over a fence and running across railway track while police dogs chased him.
Police saw a white Holden Commodore, believed to be driven by a man who had several warrants to arrest, on Cameron Rd in Tauranga at 2.40pm.
They tracked the driver to the Pyes Pa area in Tauranga and attempted to pull the vehicle over. The driver fled and the Armed Offenders Squad was called as a precaution as the chase began.
Police say they followed the driver through Oropi, back to Tauranga, then over the Kaimai Range and into the Matamata-Piako District before spikes were laid at the intersection of SH27 and SH29 in Hinuera at 3:53pm.
The car crashed after going through the spikes and hitting a power pole. The driver, who was not believed to have been injured, was taken into custody.
A Hinuera resident, who did not want to be named, said he heard the sedan speeding along SH29 before it crashed into a power pole. It then slammed into a neighbouring fence.
"He was going fast, real fast.
"There's a power pole right beside that railing fence. So he's taken out the power pole and the railing fence and gate right beside the road."
The driver then jumped out of the "totalled" car and ran through a paddock and across the train tracks before police caught him about 200m from where the vehicle had crashed, the resident said.
"They (AOS) came flying into the yard and one jumped out with a gun and ran down the yard ... They were obviously trying to circle him so he couldn't go far.
"The dogs chased him and managed to get him from not far from where he had crashed."
Motorist Graeme Mead told the Herald he was stopped at the cordon on SH29 just after the crash and could see about nine police cars and two fire engines there.
It looked like the police cars had been approaching the fleeing vehicle from both directions.
He said the car had ploughed into a power pole and was "buggered". He did not know how the driver would have even got out of the wrecked vehicle.
Part of State Highway 29 near Hinuera School was closed for an hour after the crash.
Police said charges were likely.