The Transport Accident Investigation Commission has begun an investigation into a fatal collision between a truck and train near Marton.
The crash occurred on Saunders Rd off State Highway 1 at around 3.30pm on Thursday.
Fire and Emergency New Zealand has since confirmed the truck caught fire after the collision, with two appliances called in to extinguish the flames.
Shortly after 7pm, police confirmed that one person in the truck had died.
Firefighters were called again at 9.40pm to douse the vehicle which was still smouldering when a tow truck attempted to remove it from the scene.
In a statement, the commission's chief investigator of accidents said an investigation team had been appointed, and travelled to the scene on Thursday night.
"The investigation team have expert knowledge in this field, including rail engineering and maintenance," Harald Hendel said.
"Their initial evidence gathering work will include interviewing witnesses and inspecting and measuring the rail and rolling stock."
The inquiry was confirmed alongside a separate Serious Crash Unit investigation, which will also look at the circumstances of the crash.
KiwiRail also released a statement on Friday morning which said its thoughts were with those affected by the tragedy.
"Incidents like this are extremely upsetting for all those involved, and our thoughts are with the family and friends of the person who has died," group chief operating officer Todd Moyle said.
"In line with our standard practice our driver has been given leave, and all of our staff involved are being offered support from KiwiRail."
Moyle said the train involved in the collision was travelling from Tauranga to Palmerston North, with the affected line was closed for four and a half hours on Thursday.
"The incident is being investigated, and any further comment from us is inappropriate at this stage."