A person has died after a serious two-vehicle crash on State Highway 3 in Taranaki.

The two vehicles collided at the Tariki Underpass between Stratford and Inglewood about 6.30am.

A Fire and Emergency spokesman said one person had been trapped and needed to be freed from the wreckage by firefighters.

He was not sure of the extent of the person's injuries.

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Senior Sergeant Chris Whitehead confirmed one person had died at the scene. One other person had been taken in a stable condition by ambulance to Taranaki Base Hospital in New Plymouth.

The scene at the Tariki Underpass this morning. It's understood this is not the vehicle in which a person died.
The scene at the Tariki Underpass this morning. It's understood this is not the vehicle in which a person died.

Senior Constable Doug Peach said the crash was head-on between two vehicles, each occupied by one person.

He said the cause of the crash was unknown but it appeared a northbound vehicle had crossed the centre line.

Peach said a number of emergency staff commented about the torrential rain as they drove to the scene and observing many members of public weren't driving to the conditions.

Diversions were being put in place and motorists were asked to avoid the area.

The Serious Crash Unit was investigating.