A POLICE car rolled off a recovery truck and down a hill before smashing into a car.

Shocked commuters watched on as the vehicle picked up speed down the busy city centre street.

Emergency services were called at 8.42am to the scene to reports of a two-car crash. 

An East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said: "We were called at 8.42am to reports of a crash involving two cars.

The Argus:

"One police car had rolled off a low loader into another vehicle.

"We left the scene at 9.01am after making the scene safe.

"Two appliances attended from Preston Circus."

A Sussex Police spokesman said the matter has been referred to a health and safety executive. 

He said: "A road traffic collision occurred in Kingswood Street, Brighton, at about 8.40am. 

"While the exact circumstances are unclear at this stage, it appears a police vehicle – in the process of being recovered by a recovery operator – has rolled down the hill and collided with a silver Skoda. 

The Argus:

"One occupant of the Skoda and the recovery operator were treated by paramedics at the scene for minor injuries."

A crowd gathered in the street shortly after the incident and watched on as fire crews worked to make the scene safe.

One passer-by said: "The police car just rolled backwards down the hill before hitting the car.

"There was a man inside and I saw him being put in the ambulance."

Fire engines, police cars and an ambulance can be seen at the scene of the incident near the Brighton University Grand Parade building.

The Argus:

Pictures show the police car's crumpled door and the other car's number plate hanging off. 

Another passer-by said: "I saw two fire engines fly past me while I was walking to work and saw them stop by the building site.

"There was a police car which was all battered down the side and another car which looked like it had been hit.

"Somebody told me the police car rolled down the hill and smashed into the other car."

A South East Coast Ambulance Service spokesman said: "We were called at about 8.40am.

"One ambulance crew attended the scene and checked two people over at the scene for what was believed to be minor injuries.

"No-one needed to be transported to hospital for treatment."