THE driver of a fire engine is to stand trial later in the year following a collision involving an emergency appliance and a cyclist.

Kevin William Hall was at the wheel of an engine called out on an emergency on May 1 last year.

As he headed along the A693 in West Pelton, between Stanley and Chester-le-Street, a message was received standing the vehicle down as the emergency was now aborted.

While attempting to turn the vehicle to head back to the station, the nearest being High Handenhold, it was in collision with a male cyclist who suffered serious multiple injuries as a result.

Appearing at Durham Crown Court for a plea hearing in the case, Mr Hall denied a charge of causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

But, the 45-year-old firefighter admitted the lesser offence of careless driving.

The case was adjourned for trial on the initial charge and Mr Hall, of Eppleton Hall Close, Seaham, was bailed to return for the estimated two-day hearing starting at the court on May 28.