A MOTORIST whose car had been involved in a crash with a HGV was struck by a second lorry minutes later as he stood on the road.

The double collision caused the A19 through North Yorkshire to be closed for ten hours today (Tuesday, February 19).

The 35-year-old man from Thirsk was taken to hospital with serious head injuries and is tonight said to be in a critical condition. 

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North Yorkshire Police have appealed for witnesses to the collisions, which happened within ten minutes of each other between 1.10am and 1.20am.

The first crash was on the southbound carriageway close to the junction for Kirby Sigston, near Northallerton, and involved a black Ford Focus and a lorry.

As a result of the collision the Focus left the carriageway. Although the lorry driver did not stop at the time, he has been identified and police say they will be interviewing him.

The second crash happened nearby, also on the southbound carriageway, close to the junction for Over Silton, and involved a heavy goods vehicle and the man who had been driving the Ford Focus, who was standing on the road.

The injured driver was taken to James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough.

The A19 was closed until around 11am while police investigated the circumstances of the crashes. 

Diversions were set up taking traffic along the A684 through Northallerton and on the A61 and A168 via Ripon, causing major disruption through the morning rush hour.

Traffic Sergeant Richard Parsons, of North Yorkshire Police's Roads Policing Group, said: “I am asking anyone who witnessed either of the collisions to come forward and contact the police straight away.

“I also need to speak to anyone who was travelling on the A19 and may have seen the Ford Focus prior to the first collision or a pedestrian on the road at the time, and urge them to get in touch.”

Anyone who can help with the investigation can contact North Yorkshire Police on 101 or email information to richard.parsons@northyorkshire.pnn.police.uk.