AN investigation is underway after a crash on the A68 on Thursday morning left one man critically ill and two others injured.

The incident, involving a green Vauxhall Astra and Silver Kia, happened at about 7.30am, between Witton-le-Wear and Toft Hill.

One male driver was airlifted to James Cook University Hospital, in Middlesbrough, with injuries described as critical.

The other male driver and a teenage boy were taken to the same hospital with serious injuries.

The A68 was closed, between Sloshes Lane, Toft Hill, and Clemmy Bank, Witton-le-Wear, for nearly seven hours to allow investigation work to be carried out.

Police are keen to speak to anyone who witnessed the incident and particularly anyone with any dash cam footage from between 7.20am and 7.30am on Thursday, September 13.

Witnesses should call Durham Constabulary on 101, quoting incident number 55 of September 13.

The air ambulance helicopter landed in a field on the edge of the A68 and the crew, along with ambulance and the Great North Air Ambulance's rapid response team, treated the casualty at the scene before he was taken to hospital.

Saunders Lane, Hamsterley, remained open and was used to divert traffic.