A man suffered burns to 10 per cent of his body when a fire he was lighting blew up, emergency services say.

The Nelson Marlborough rescue Helicopter was called to the scene near the outskirts of Motueka about 10am.

Pilot Tim Douglas Clifford said a local man in his 40s was believed to have been using an accelerant to start a rubbish fire on the rural property when it flashed over him.

He suffered burns to about 10 per cent of his body, mostly around his head, neck and hands.


He was taken to the specialist burns unit at Hutt Hospital in Upper Hutt in a serious condition.