A MAN and a woman were taken to hospital following a high-speed, head-on rush hour crash.

A man in his 40s from Ferryhill, County Durham, suffered a suspected broken leg and a woman from Newcastle was left with a spinal injury, which is not thought to be serious.

The man, who had to be cut free from his car by firefighters, was taken by Great North Air Ambulance to James Cook University Hospital, Middlesbrough, while the woman was taken by road ambulance to University Hospital of North Durham, Durham City.

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The man was driving a green VW Golf GTI, while the woman was driving a green Nissan Micra.

The crash happened at about 8.30am today (Friday, March 14) on the A177 south of Coxhoe, near the turn-off for Trimdon.

The A177 was closed for about three hours between Sedgefield and Coxhoe, causing some buses to be diverted.