Two deadly crashes on State Highway 1 this afternoon in the North and South Island have bumped the road toll up to 12 deaths in the past five days.

One person died after a head-on collision between a utility vehicle and a car north of Te Hana, more than 80km north of central Auckland, about 5pm.

Both of the Auckland Westpac Rescue Helicopters attended the incident, which had multiple patients.

One person ied at the scene, but one was in a critical condition and two more were in a serious condition when the rescue helicopters arrived.

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The front-seat passenger of the vehicle whose driver died was found in a critical condition and given two litres of blood en route to Auckland City Hospital.

Emergency services on the scene of the incident near Te Hana. Photo / Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust
Emergency services on the scene of the incident near Te Hana. Photo / Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust

The male aged in his 30s was suffering severe abdominal pain and treated by the Helicopter Emergency Medicine Service doctor.

Another male in his 50s from the other vehicle involved suffered lower body trauma and was also flown to Auckland City Hospital.

Elsewhere, one person died in a serious crash on State Highway 1, near Ward in the Marlborough region of the South Island, around 4pm.

Emergency services attended the single-car incident, which forced the closure of one lane. Police said traffic management was in place.