A fatal level crossing crash is the second at the site in as many years.

An elderly man was killed this afternoon when the Toyota Corolla he was driving collided with a train near Morrinsville in the Waikato about 3.20pm.

An elderly woman passenger was able to walk from the scene and was taken to Waikato Hospital by ambulance with moderate to serious injuries.

Police confirmed another elderly man was killed at the same crossing at an awkward intersection west of the town two years ago.

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In today's crash both the car and the train were heading east toward Morrinsville from Hamilton.

Police are unsure what caused the crash and are investigating.

It's not clear how fast either vehicle was travelling but the car was written off with extensive damage to the rear.

The road is still closed as the wreckage is cleared.

Witness Leah Conway, who lives opposite the railway crossing, said she was surprised to not hear the train approaching the intersection.

She didn't notice the warning bells sounding either until after she had heard the noise of the crash.

"I didn't really want to go and look, I didn't know what it would be like," she said, talking about the aftermath of the crash.

She said the railway crossing does not have traffic barriers.

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KiwiRail's group general manager of asset management David Gordon said a 716m long freight train ferrying goods between Auckland and Tauranga struck the car.

"KiwiRail is saddened by the loss of life and offers sincere condolences to the friends and families of those affected," he said.

"This is a terrible accident to occur on what is a busy stretch of line at a crossing with bells and warning lights, which our monitoring system shows were operating at the time.

He said the train driver was not injured in the collision but has been stood down from duties and will receive additional support as is usual procedure.

"Events like this are extremely traumatic for our people and every assistance will be offered to the driver," he said.

The New Zealand Transport Agency warned motorists to expect delays after the serious crash.

The Serious Crash Unit will be investigating.

Police roadblock in Morrinsville after the fatal train crash near the Waikato township of Morrinsville. Photo / Alan Gibson
Police roadblock in Morrinsville after the fatal train crash near the Waikato township of Morrinsville. Photo / Alan Gibson