THREE people were taken to hospital following a two-car smash.
A woman driving a black Mitsubishi Warrior car, and a man travelling in a white Ford Ka with a female passenger, were involved in the crash at 7.49pm on Monday.
The two vehicles collided on the A179 near to the junction with the A19, on the outskirts of Hartlepool.
Fire crews from the town’s Stranton Fire Station rushed to the scene, along with five North East Ambulance Service vehicles.
The woman driver of the Mitsubishi and the female passenger of the Ka were removed from the vehicles on spine boards and then placed into waiting ambulances.
The man driving the Ka was helped from the car and into an ambulance.
Stranton Fire Station watch manager Michael Smith said all three were conscious, were wearing neck collars, and were taken to the James Cook University Hospital, in Middlesbrough.
Exact details of their injuries are unknown.
Mr Smith said: “We took the back seats of the cars down to get the spine boards in. We didn’t have to use any cutting equipment.
“They all had collars on and were taken to hospital.”
Firefighters left the scene at 9.40pm and left police from Durham Constabulary, assisted by officers from Cleveland Police, carrying out investigations.
The road was expected to be closed until around midnight.
The incident happened on the same stretch of road where driving instructor Colin Brown was killed in a collision in May involving his silver Citroen C4 car and a minibus.