A crash on State Highway 10 in the Far North moved a shed off its foundations and left a debris field so big it looked almost like it was caused by a plane crash, firefighters say.
The accident occurred just before midnight on Friday at Kaingaroa, between Taipā and Awanui.
Kaitaia deputy fire chief Ross Beddows said a westbound Ford Transit heavy van left the road on SH 10 east of Zidich Rd and hit a tree before careering downhill and ramming an old cowshed and power pole.
The impact left the van's sliding door wrapped around the tree and completely tore off the left-hand side of the vehicle and the roof.
Two fire crews from Kaitaia and one from Mangonui, along with police and St John Ambulance, attended the crash.
''There was a debris field almost reminiscent of a plane crash and the shed was moved off its foundations,'' Beddows said.
Firefighters used hydraulic cutting equipment to extricate the driver, who was trapped in the footwell of the vehicle.
Given the damage to the van and the shed it was remarkable the man's injuries were not life-threatening.
The man was conscious and talking during the rescue.
''Had there been a passenger there would likely have been a more tragic outcome,'' Beddows said.
It was not immediately clear if the driver had been the sole occupant so firefighters searched the surrounding area with a thermal imaging camera to make sure no one had been thrown from the vehicle.
A St John spokeswoman said one patient was transported to Kaitaia Hospital in a moderate condition.
The cause of the crash was not immediately clear. A police investigation is continuing.
The accident, at a corner where a number of vehicles have left the road and crashed into trees over the years, comes less than a fortnight after an 11-year-old boy was hit by a truck as he was crossing the highway at nearby Kareponia.
Seth Ngawhika remains in Auckland's Starship Hospital where he has been transferred out of intensive care into a ward. He is in a stable condition.