A male driver is in a serious condition in Lismore Base Hospital after the car he was driving collided head-on with a petrol tanker on the Pacific Highway north of Ballina shortly after 3pm yesterday.
The highway was completely blocked by the tanker, which had rolled onto its side, covering all lanes.
Its tank ruptured and hazmat crews worked hard to limit the amount of fuel leaking onto the road. Traffic was diverted for several hours.
The Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter attended the scene at about 3.30pm.
The male single occupant of the car was trapped for more than an hour due to the impact of the collision with the truck. He was released from the car and treated at the scene before being flown to the Lismore Base Hospital in a serious condition with multiple trauma injuries.
The driver of the truck received only minor injuries and was transported by road ambulance also to Lismore Base Hospital.
The collision occurred on the very northern end of the Ballina Bypass, 12km north of Ballina at Tintenbar, where the dual carriageway returns to single lanes.