A DRIVER escaped 'without a scratch' after his car crashed into wooden telegraph pole and smashed it to the ground on Saturday morning.

As luck would further have it, a passing ambulance arrived on the scene moments after it had happened and he was given an immediate precautionary check over.

A spokesperson for the County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service said: "We were alerted to the collision in Front Street, Helmington Row, at about 10.45am and dispatched a crew from the nearby Crook Fire Station.

The Northern Echo:

"The car, driven by an male, had collided with a telegraph pole. He was out we arrived and, amazingly so, with no injuries.

"There was considerable damage to the car and the telegraph pole."

A spokesperson for the North East Ambulance Service said: "One of our ambulance crews actually came across this incident, while on route back to the station.

"They contacted our control room at 10.45am to inform them of the incident on Front Street, Helmington Row.

"They checked over the driver, who was uninjured. They informed the police who arrived a short while later."

The Northern Echo:

The road was closed for a number of hours while the scene was cleared.