MP hopeful calls for urgent action on A1

A PARLIAMENTARY candidate has called for urgent changes to the A1 after she witnessed the aftermath of a three-car smash yesterday.

A1 accident

A PARLIAMENTARY candidate has called for urgent changes to the A1 after she witnessed the aftermath of a three-car smash yesterday.

A 40-year-old man was taken to Newcastle General Hospital as a precaution after suffering spinal injuries in the accident at the Newton-on-the-Moor and Shilbottle turn-off near Felton, Northumberland.

One lane of the northbound carriageway was closed for 45 minutes from around 10.30am.

An investigation is under way to establish the cause of the smash.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan, Conservative candidate for the constituency of Berwick, yesterday slammed the Government for continually ignoring calls for upgrades to Northumberland’s roads.

Having driven past the scene of the accident shortly after it occurred, she said she has come to “almost expect” accidents on a notoriously-frustrating stretch of road.

She said: “We have very bad statistics on that road. This kind of thing is happening so often that I’m just relieved that no-one was killed this time.

“It’s a sad state of affairs but, yes, you do come to almost expect bad things to happen.”

Only two months ago, three pensioners died while attempting to cross the dual carriageway near Swarland, just south of Alnwick.

The accident happened when their Rover car collided with a Saab that was travelling north.

And in June, a 51-year-old man from Tweedmouth died when his car collided with an articulated lorry at Hampeth, near the Shilbottle turn-off. Mrs Trevelyan added: “This will always be a problem until we get a road which is a dual carriageway from Morpeth to Berwick so people can drive consistently rather than speeding up on the dual portions.

“When you get a long-distance dual carriageway, you get better, more considered driving.

“It’s not acceptable that the Government have continued to ignore us on this issue. Thank God there wasn’t a life lost.”

The 40-year-old man was the only person seriously injured in the collision. He had to be cut from a crushed car.

A spokesperson for Northumbria Fire and Rescue service said: “We were called to a three-vehicle collision on the A1 shortly after 10am.

“Two crews from Alnwick attended and removed one man from a vehicle using cutting equipment.

“He was then taken by road ambulance to Newcastle General Hospital with what we believed to be spinal injuries.”

A spokeswoman for Northumbria Police added: “An investigation is under way into the cause of the crash. One lane of the northbound carriageway was closed for about three-quarters of an hour.”

At the Labour conference in September Transport Secretary Ruth Kelly failed to mention the A1 when setting out her priorities.

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