A car crash on Waitarere Beach has left one person seriously injured on Friday.

It appears the small hatchback vehicle was overloaded. A Fire and Emergency spokesperson confirmed six people were in the car when it rolled near the surf lifesaving club some time after 3pm.

Emergency services attended, including a rescue helicopter, and the injured person was treated at the scene before being flown to Palmerston North Hospital.

Photos of the scene posted online by Waitarere Beach Volunteer Fire Brigade, which attended the incident, showed steeply curving tyre tracks near the vehicle.


Vehicles are permitted on Waitarere Beach but there is a 30kph speed restriction on beach entrance roads which stretches around a kilometre in either direction in front of the surf lifesaving club.

In November last year, Horowhenua District Council voted in a lower speed limit for all beaches in the district to increase safety for beach-goers as well as reduce the impact of vehicles on beach ecosystems.

Foxton police officer Dave Fraser said at the time it was undesirable for people to drive fast on beaches.

"You don't want people going 100kmh on the beach. There's soft spots and people are always rolling things and crashing. You'd be bloody daft if you were going 100km/h on the beach, whether there's people around or not," he said.

"We're all beach users - pedestrians and drivers - and if we could all get along it'd be happy days."

Beach driving is currently permitted for the whole of the Horowhenua coastline, with a speed limit of 30km/h for a kilometre or so either side of the Foxton and Waitarere surf life-saving clubs. Otherwise the speed has been the open road speed of 100km/h.