THREE people are in a serious condition after a head-on crash on a carriageway. 

Emergency services, including two air ambulances, five fire engines, and a rapid response vehicle rushed to the scene of the accident on the A59 just before 5pm on Monday. 

Two women and and man were all taken to hospital after a full-scale rescue operation that lasted several hours. 

The crash, which involved a Hyundai Tucson and a Hyundai i30, occurred on the Preston-bound lane of the A59, between the Petre and Bramley Mead roundabout.

The man, a 62-year-old from Clitheroe, suffered serious injuries to his head, neck, back and chest whilst the i30 driver, a 33-year-old woman from Preston, was left with a broken arm and back injury.

The Tucson passenger, a 61-year-old Clitheroe woman, was airlifted to hospital with serious head, chest, arm, pelvic and leg injuries.

Traffic in the area quickly built up as police closed a large section of the A59 to allow rescuers to work and the air ambulances to land on the road. 

The ambulance service sent two helicopters, three ambulances, a tactical commander, a senior clinician, a doctor and a rapid response vehicle to the scene. 

Detectives are now trying to piece together how the accident occurred, with officers asking the public for assistance with any dashcam footage or information that may help them. 

Sgt Dave Hurst said: “My thoughts are with the injured man and women and I wish them all a speedy recovery.

“This collision happened at a busy time of day and so I am asking anyone who saw what happened but hasn’t spoken to us already to get in touch. Similarly, if you have any dash cam footage of the incident, please let us know."

The road was closed for over six hours, with motorists saying the still couldn't gain access to the carraigeway at 11pm . 

A fire service spokesman said: “Five crews from Blackburn, The Ribble Valley and Great Harwood were sent to the scene. 

“An operation took place to free three trapped passengers from inside of their vehicles. 

“Crews stayed on after the rescue operation had taken place to assist police and roadside investigators with clearing the area and ensuring the road was safe.”

Leader of the Ribble Valley Borough Council, Stephen Atkinson, said his thoughts were with all of those involved. 

He said: “I’m thinking about those who have been injured, and send them all my well-wishes.

“I would encourage Lancashire County Council to review the safety measures and the capacity level on the A59 to see what can be done to improve the situation.”

Just last month a crash involving a horse-drawn caravan and a car caused the road to be closed as two people were airlifted to hospital. One of the horses involved also had to be put down. 

Anyone with information or footage should call 101 quoting incident reference 956 on July 29.