A man suffering serious burns to his body and head has been airlifted to hospital after an attempt to light a fire went wrong.
The Dannevirke man in his 50s was flown by rescue helicopter to Palmerston North Hospital on Boxing Day where his condition stabilised.
He was then transferred to the Hutt Valley Hospital for specialist treatment to his burns, a Philips Search and Rescue Trust spokeswoman says.
In a busy Boxing Day, the Palmerston North Rescue Helicopter also flew an elderly Mataroa man with a medical problem to Whanganui Hospital in a serious condition.
It later used its rescue hoist to pick up a man in his 60s suffering a heart attack on the bank of the Waiohine River in the eastern Tararua Ranges near Greytown.
The helicopter then airlifted the man, who was in a serious condition, directly to the rooftop of Wellington Hospital.