Air New Zealand has cancelled a flight from Los Angeles this evening after the plane was hit by another aircraft on the tarmac.

Flight NZ5 from Los Angeles to Auckland has been grounded after it sustained damage to its horizontal stabiliser.

A spokesperson for Air New Zealand said the Boeing 777-300 aircraft was parked on the gate and waiting for boarding when it was clipped from behind.

Air New Zealand general manager customer experience Anita Hawthorne said the airline is doing everything it can to assist stranded customers.

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"Unfortunately 285 customers have had their flight cancelled this evening," she said.

"Many customers will, however, unfortunately need to overnight in Los Angeles and we are providing accommodation where necessary."

Hawthorne said they are reaccommodating some customers via the NZ1 Los Angeles-Auckland service this evening.

Other customers are rerouting via other North American ports or booking them on other airlines, she said.

Air New Zealand engineers are travelling to Los Angeles this evening and a replacement part has been located.

The replacement part will need to be transported to Los Angeles and fitted to the aircraft which is likely to take several days.