Canterbury highway blocked, two injured following serious four-car crash

A part of a Canterbury highway has been closed and two people have been injured, one seriously following a four-car crash.

Emergency services were called to the crash on Main South Rd (State Highway 1) near Burnham just before 2pm on Saturday.

A police spokeswoman said early reports suggested four cars were involved and at least two people in separate vehicles were trapped.

She said the road was blocked and diversions were being set up along Burnham and Thomsons roads.

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A rescue helicopter was also on its way to the scene.

A St John spokeswoman said two people were injured, one seriously and another moderately.

The seriously injured patient was flown by rescue helicopter to Christchurch Hospital, while the other was taken by ambulance, she said.

Fire and Emergency New Zealand spokeswoman Jill Higginson said three crews from Burnham, Dunsandel and Rolleston were in attendance.

She said they rescued one person trapped inside a vehicle.

Many of the roads surrounding the crash scene were experiencing high levels of traffic congestion just after 2.30pm, according to NZ Transport Agency traffic data.

Just hours earlier a person was killed following a two-car crash near Lake Tekapo township.

One other person died and another was moderately injured following a three-vehicle crash on State Highway 7 (Weka Pass Rd) in Hurunui at 12.10pm on Friday.

At least 23 people have died on Canterbury roads so far this year, which is 12 less than the same time last year.