A minibus packed with Underworld staff hurtles off the road in a horrific smash which will leave familiar faces battling severe injuries and impact on Coronation Street for months to come.

The accident, during a night out for factory staff, leaves Sinead Tinker (played by Katie McGlynn) with her life hanging in the balance in dramatic scenes to be screened later this month.

The crash will feature in a trio of Coronation Street episodes from January 19 to 21 after the bus driven by Steve McDonald (Simon Gregson) is run off the road by a gang of boy racers.

Viewers will see the passengers left with nasty injuries after the vehicle shoots off the road, but there is more horror to come. Coronation Street bosses say at least one is trapped in the bus which comes to rest perched on the edge of a sheer drop, and there is a battle to free them before the wreck tumbles over the cliff.

The smash will force Steve to face up to his depression as a result of his actions on the night, and arch enemies Carla Connor and Tracy Barlow will see their relationship change forever, while programme chiefs say it will be “touch and go” whether Sinead recovers from her injuries.

The impact of the accident – filmed over three weeks with the cast suspended upside down in the bus – will be felt for months to come.

Coronation Street producer Stuart Blackburn said: “Everyone involved in filming these dramatic episodes is very proud of the end results. The stunt is breathtaking and is real edge-of-the-seat stuff.

“But, in the spirit of great storytelling, the crash itself is just the start of the drama and will have far-reaching effects for all the people involved in the coming months.”