Man, 20, and woman, 21, on motorbike are killed after A19 smash with lorry

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POLICE have confirmed two motorcylists were killed in a collision between a motorbike and a lorry on the A19 in the early hours of Saturday.

Collision investigators say a 20-year-old man and a woman aged 21 died when the motorbike they were travelling on collided with a HGV wagon around 2.45am on the A19 northbound near Hawthorn Services.

The deceased were confirmed dead at the scene and police are yet to release details of their identity.

The lorry driver, a 51-year-old man from Pontefract in West Yorkshire, was arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving.

He was bailed pending further inquiries, until September, after being interviewed at Peterlee Police Station.

Police are appealing for information after the incident.

Investigating officer at Durham’s Road Policing Unit, Sergeant Jonathan Morgan, said: “Whilst we work to establish what happened in the lead-up to the collision, we ask for anyone who may have seen either of the vehicles in the area to come forward as soon as possible.”

The fatal smash led to both carriageways of the A19 between Easington Village and Dalton Park being closed throughout Saturday.

Traffic flow did not return to normal on the southbound carriageway until after 2pm, and one lane of the northbound carriageway remained closed on Saturday afternoon.

Four fire crews were called to tackle the lorry blaze which happened around half a mile before Hawthorn Services northbound and spent two hours fighting the flames.

See www.hartlepoolmail.co.uk and www.peterleestar.co.uk for updates.