At 1:41am on Saturday, July 16, police received a call from a taxi driver who had come across a car that had collided with the central reservation on the A19 near to the Killingworth turn-off.
The taxi driver had stopped his car at the scene of the collision and got out to see if he could help anyone.
While out of his car, and trying to help, another car passing the site of the collision collided with him.
Officers and paramedics attended the scene and he was given urgent treatment at the roadside, however he sadly died from his injuries.
The driver of the car who collided with the man stopped at the scene and is helping officers with enquiries. He has not been arrested.
Another man, aged 24, has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and is currently in police custody.
We have identified the deceased man, have made contact with his family and are supporting them at this difficult time. Our thoughts are with them.
We are not in a position to name him publically at this stage and enquiries into the incident are ongoing.
Anyone with any information that could help police with their enquiries is asked to contact police on 101 quoting reference number 140 16/07/16.
The incident has been referred to the IPCC because the man spoke to the police in the minutes before his death, this is protocol in any incident resulting in serious injury or death following police contact.