A young girl was seriously injured when she smashed into a piece of driftwood while riding a quad bike in Manawatu last night.

The 13-year-old was riding on Tangimoana Beach, about 2km south of the Rangitikei River mouth, when the accident happened.

She suffered serious head and chest injuries.

The Palmerston North Rescue Helicopter was dispatched just after 7.30 pm last night to Tangimoana Beach, about 2km south of the Rangitikei River mouth. The Tangimoana volunteer fire brigade also attended the accident.

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The girl was stabilised at the scene by paramedics before being transported to Palmerston North Hospital for treatment.

Earlier the chopper was also sent to a coastal property just north of Blackhead Beach to help with a woman who had tripped and fallen and sustained a serious fracture.

The 68-year-old's fracture was stablised and splinted by the onboard paramedic before she was airlifted to Hawkes Bay Hospital for treatment.