A second person has died following a Bay of Plenty crash this afternoon that police say appears to have involved five vehicles and occurred after a car broke down.

St John Ambulance tweeted earlier that two others were taken to Tauranga Hospital - one with critical injuries and the second with minor injuries.

Police said this evening one person died at the scene and a second in hospital following the 4.08pm crash on State Highway 29A at Maungatapu, between Baypark and Welcome Bay.

Bay of Plenty District Health Board spokeswoman Diana Marriot said a 66-year-old Tauranga man injured in the crash was this evening in a moderate to serious condition in the hospital's high dependency unit.


West-bound lanes at the scene of the crash were closed for almost five hours following the crash as the Serious Crash Unit investigated, but these had now been re-opened.

The crash occurred at the same time as two-car crash was reported at Pyes Pa Road, south of Tauranga. No one was injured and no road blocks were reported in the crash, but power lines were brought down.

Two more minor crashes followed shortly after, one in The Strand involving two vehicles and another on SH2 at Bethlehem, where the driver of a car suffered minor cuts to their hand after driving into a tree.

Police last night urged motorists in the region to take care given the high number of crashes this afternoon.