A 6-year-old girl is critically injured in hospital after the car she was in struck a power pole last night.

Senior Sergeant Darryl Lennane said a man and a woman were also in the car when the crash happened at about 11pm on Old Coach Rd, near the Southland town of Mataura, 12km south of Gore.

"The child suffered serious injuries in the crash and is in a critical condition in Dunedin Hospital."

Southern Ambulance Communications spokesman Andy Gray said an ambulance met the trio at Mataura Police Station and the girl, who had arm injuries and was unconscious, was taken by ambulance to Invercargill Hospital.


A medical team flew from Dunedin Hospital to retrieve her, and she was flown to Dunedin Hospital.

He did not know if the man and woman travelling with the girl were also injured, Mr Gray said.