The police are appealing to motorcyclists to secure their luggage properly, after one rider was seriously injured today by a crash involving a sleeping bag.

Police were called to a motorcycle crash around 1pm today on the Lumsden-Dipton Highway.

The rider was flown to hospital by helicopter.

Initial inquiries indicated the rider's sleeping bag become dislodged and was pulled into the wheel arch, police said.

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"We are expecting an influx of motorcyclists and vehicles to be travelling in the Southland, Central Otago and Otago areas before, during, and after the Burt Munro Motorcycle Rally and urge all road users to take extra care."

"The more gear you have, the heavier the bike will be and the more difficult it can be to handle, so minimise wherever possible," said Constable David Leach.

"We want riders to arrive safely, so make sure luggage is strapped or locked to the motorcycle in a way that it cannot accidentally fall out of place."