Nine people have died in three separate crashes today, including five members of the same family in an accident where a car hit a tree on a rural road north of Taupō.
Three people have also died in a crash in Ashburton, while a man has died after his car plunged into water near Auckland Airport.
Police were called to a crash on Tirohanga Rd, which joins with State Highway 1 near Atiamuri, north of Taupo at 7.40am on Monday.
Five members of the same family were killed, three women and two men, after a Ford Falcon carrying six people crashed into a tree as it was travelling in a westerly direction.
An 11-year-old boy, who had been trapped inside, was freed and transferred to Waikato Hospital in a serious condition, a statement from the Waikato Westpac and Greenlea rescue helicopters said.
In a statement, police confirmed five people had died.
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