A MOTORBIKE rider has been seriously injured in a crash that forced the closure of the New England Highway.
The rider was travelling on the highway near Glen Innes on Saturday afternoon when he lost control about 3pm and crashed, south of town.
The 69-year-old suffered serious back and head injuries in the crash.
Passersby alerted emergency services, and ambulance and police crews were deployed to the scene.
Paramedics treated the man at the scene but due to the serious nature of his injuries, the Westpac Rescue Helicopter was also tasked.
Paramedics transported the patient to Glen Innes airport where he met the chopper with a critical care medical team on board.
The chopper's doctor assessed the man at the scene and he was stabilised before being flown to Tamworth hospital for specialist treatment.
He was listed in a stable condition.
The crash forced the closure of the highway for a short time, the RMS said.
On Sunday afternoon, the helicopter was tasked to Nundle after a trail bike rider was injured in a crash in the Nundle State Forest.