One person has been killed after a bus has crashed into the front of a bank in a busy Darlington high street.
The incident occurred in Northgate, just before 11am, Durham Constabulary said.
A spokesman added: “The bus left the road – we don’t know why – and has crashed into a Halifax.”
A further three people were injured in the crash, two of whom have been hospitalised. Their injuries are not thought to be life threatening.
The driver of the bus, a 52-year-old man, has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving.
Tarpaulin is being used to shield the accident scene from onlookers.
A witness told the Northern Echo: “The number 2 bus was parked up on the side of the road and pulled out before going straight into the bank.
“It was absolutely shocking, I’m still shaking now.
“That person was just out doing a bit of shopping and now they’re dead.”
The North East Ambulance Service sent three crews to the scene, including a hazardous area response team, trauma paramedics and a helicopter.
It is not clear if the injured people were bus passengers or pedestrians.
Chief Inspector Graham Milne, said: “Obviously this is a tragic incident and I would like to extend my condolences to the deceased’s family. I would also ask anyone who was in the area at the time and witnessed the collision to contact us on 101”
The road closure is still in place from St Cuthbert’s Way roundabout to Crown Street and a pedestrian cordon from M&S to the pedestrian zone at the top of Crown Street. Diversions are in place for some time.