A man in his 50s is still in a critical condition at Hawke's Bay Hospital after a 600kg silage bale landed on him on Wednesday afternoon.

Emergency services were called to the incident in a paddock off Franklin Rd, Waiohiki -between Napier and Hastings - at about 3.15pm after reports of a person trapped beneath a silage bale and freed him soon after.

There was no vehicle access at the scene and the patient was flown to Hawke's Bay Hospital by helicopter.

A Lowe Corporation Rescue Helicopter spokesperson said the man had been lifting hay bales with the forks of a tractor when one of the bales landed on him causing injuries to his upper body.


Two appliances from Napier attended the incident, as well as St John paramedics.

Federated Farmers Hawke's Bay President Jim Galloway said incidents like these were, thankfully not that common.

He said farm safety was a case of always being on the look out.

"It is about making sure you are looking at what you are doing and assessing the risks all the time. It is not a nice situation to be in if you get injured on your own on your own farm."

He also said rescue helicopters were critical to the rural community.

Hawke's Bay has the highest rate of workplace injuries in New Zealand, with 13,400 claims made for injuries received at work last year - 400 more than the previous year.