A 4-year-old boy suffered serious head injuries after he was struck by a vehicle as he ran across the road in Seaforth Rd, Waihi Beach.

Trustpower TECT Rescue Helicopter pilot Liam Brettkelly said the rescue helicopter was called to uplift the boy about 4pm yesterday, after the youngster was hit by a car and thrown several metres.

The boy was in a critical condition on arrival at the scene.

Mr Brettkelly said the boy's condition had improved but was still serious by the time the helicopter reached Waikato Hospital. Police northern communications centre Inspector Matt Sillars said the call to the communication's centre was made by St John ambulance staff at 3.44pm.

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Mr Sillars said the boy was hit as he ran across the road and it was understood the driver of vehicle stopped.

"The boy's condition was initially described as critical [and] had more to do with his age, as he did not suffer life-threatening injuries," he said.

Seaforth Rd is about 54km from Tauranga.

A Waikato Hospital spokesperson said the boy was in a stable condition and was being admitted to a Waikids ward of the hospital.

Waikids offers similar health services to Auckland's Starship Hospital.

No further details of the incident were available last night.