A COUPLE were lucky to escape with their lives after their vehicle hit a tree and overturned on a stretch of dual carriageway at the weekend.

Police said the husband and wife were injured when their Suzuki Liana ran off the A66, in Teesside, after a red Nissan Primera pulled sharply in front of them.

The Suzuki mounted a kerb on the westbound section of the trunk road close to Teesside Park, near Stockton, before landing on its roof.

Cleveland Police are hunting for the driver of the red Primera, which it is alleged was driving dangerously.

Two fire engines from Stockton and Middlesbrough attended the scene, along with ambulance crews.

The couple were freed from the car by firefighters using specialist cutting gear.

The pair, who are believed to be in their fifties, were taken to hospital where the woman was treated for a fractured arm and her husband was treated for multiple bruises. It is not thought that either of them was kept in hospital overnight.

The incident took place at about 7pm on Sunday, between the slip roads on to the A19.

Police said the Suzuki had overtaken a vehicle and was moving to the nearside lane when the Primera overtook it.

It pulled quickly back in, causing the driver to lose control, before driving on to the slip road.

A spokesman for Cleveland Police said the couple were lucky not to have been more seriously injured.

He said: "This must have been a real shock for the couple concerned. It is fair to say that they had a very fortunate escape considering the seriousness of the crash.

"Fortunately, both the driver and passenger were wearing seat belts, which may have helped save their lives."

Police are appealing for anyone with information who saw the incident or knows the identity of the driver of the Primera to contact Cleveland Police's road traffic unit on (01642) 301558.