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A skydiver suffered possible brain damage after landing head-first in a paddock in Parakai, northwest of Auckland.

The man in his 50s had been attempting to land at Parakai airfield but instead came down in a nearby paddock about 11.43am yesterday, a Westpac rescue helicopter spokeswoman said.

"It appeared that he had landed head-first and had severe facial injuries. They were concerned about brain injuries and internal injuries."

Westpac rescue helicopter crewman Mark Cannell said the skydiver had landed in a paddock by a large "shelter belt" of trees.


"He was lucky to have not come down in amongst that lot."

Mr Cannell said the man was unconscious and in a critical condition when ambulance staff first arrived.

He was conscious by the time the helicopter arrived with an advanced paramedic, but there were concerns he suffered a traumatic brain injury.

"There were some signs of some facial trauma. It sounded like he had come down wrong and contacted the ground very hard."

The man was stabilised to a serious condition and flown to Auckland Hospital.