Two people flown to hospital with bad injuries in Hume Freeway crash near Benalla

TWO people have been flown to hospital with serious injuries after a crash near Benalla on Sunday.

One was in a critical condition and the other in a serious condition after the smash at Balmattum about 1.15pm.

The southbound driver tried to pull into a rest stop at the intersection of Griffin Road when he lost control and hit a tree.

The driver and two other passengers were also taken to hospital.

The incident, which led to lengthy diversions on the highway, is being investigated by the Melbourne-based Major Collision Investigation Unit.

It followed a lucky escape during a two-car crash at Winton earlier in the day, with people avoiding serious injuries. 

A green Volvo pulled out in front a a Ford Territory towing a caravan in the southbound lanes of the Hume Freeway. 

The Volvo had driven onto the freeway from Bowers Road about 10.15am and failed to give way to the oncoming Ford.

The collision badly damaged both vehicles, knocked out road signs and left both cars in the median strip.

One person was trapped inside the Volvo and the car was cut to retrieve the person. Several others were taken to hospital. 

Senior Constable Jarrod Toomer said there had been a family in the Ford, heading back to Melbourne after a holiday, while the Volvo was heading towards Sydney.

“We’ve had several bad accidents at this location, all in the daytime,” he said.

“It just seems people turning from Bowers Road aren’t looking at the traffic enough, maybe hurrying, and not giving enough time for the traffic to get past before crossing.

“It's just a warning to people at the intersection to stop, look and don’t second guess, don’t hurry across.

“There’s plenty of time.”

Senior Constable Toomer said it had been “pretty lucky” no one was seriously injured in the collision.

The driver may be charged with careless driving, but police are still investigating the matter. 

The Volvo was extensively damaged and is likely a write off, and the Ford had damage to the front end. 

Both vehicles, and the caravan, had to be towed from the crash scene due to the damage.