FIVE people were taken to hospital after a bus was involved in a rush-hour smash.
It happened near the Oak Tree Farm pub in City Way, Doxford Park, and involved a Stagecoach bus, a 4x4 car and a security van.
The bus driver was trapped for some time before being freed by fire-fighters and taken for treatment.
Those injured, including several bus passengers, were taken to hospital by road.
The Great North Air Ambulance arrived at the scene, but was not needed.
Air ambulance paramedic Jane Peacock said: “Thankfully, they were all minor injuries but it could have been a lot worse.
“It was a little bit chaotic when we got on scene.
“There were about 20 people on the bus and the driver was trapped but he is OK.
“The driver of the van also had minor injuries.”
The smash happened just after 8.30am yesterday.
A spokeswoman for Stagecoach said: “The driver of the bus was cut free from the vehicle by the emergency services and has been transferred to hospital.
“We understand that four bus passengers also suffered minor injuries as a result of the incident.
“Our immediate thoughts are for the welfare of those involved. Safety is our absolute priority.
“We are assisting police with their inquiries into this incident and will also carry out our own investigation.”
A spokeswoman for Northumbria Police said: “Police received a call at 8.34am of a report of a crash on City Way in Sunderland. All emergency services attended the scene, where a number of passengers on the bus suffered minor injuries.
“Five people were taken to hospital for treatment and the road had to be closed for a number of hours.”
The crash happened close to where a motorbike crashed into a mum and her twin toddlers who she was pushing in a pram, in February 2012.
The pair were taken to Sunderland Royal Hospital before the girl, was transferred to Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary for treatment.
The road, near to Doxford International Business Park, has a national speed limit of 60mph.