Mum’s 20mph call after horror smash

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A Roughlee mum of three has called for action to be taken to enforce 20mph speed limits outside schools as they open and close.

Sophie Waiting’s vehicle was hit by a tractor and trailer in Gisburn Road, Blacko, on Friday morning.

And she believes it was only because she was driving a 4x4 Mercedes that the accident was not more serious – with possible fatal consequences.

Sophie was parked as she was taking daughters Macy (10) and Joss (8) to Blacko Primary School along with baby son Tom when their car was hit by a tractor and trailer which was coming down the hill into the village at around 8-50am.

The Mercedes was pushed into a wall, the passenger door was crushed and Sophie said: “We were lucky.

“It was only because the children had argued about who was going to sit in the front that they were all in the back seats.

“Had it been a smaller car, the tractor would have gone over the top of it and people inside it could easily have been killed.

“And should anyone have been walking past at the time, they would have been crushed.

“I saw it coming towards us and out of control.

“For that initial second I thought he had killed my children and that has to be the most horrific thing any mother has to go through.

“All I could hear was screaming and I didn’t know who to try to get out first.

“Drivers coming down the hill at school times must stick to the 20mph when the yellow lights are flashing.

“Police say that the limits are not enforceable, but why should Blacko be treated any differently from schools in towns just because we are in a rural area? Is someone going to have to die to make something happen?”

And Macy said: “At first I didn’t know it was real.

“I thought I was in a dream, and when it all came to me I realised what happened.

“I was shaking uncontrollably and one of the men at school had to open the door to get us out.

“I was really scared and nervous that anyone else was hurt.”

The accident is the second one involving a tractor and trailer on Gisburn Road in Blacko in a matter of weeks.

In September, a trailer became unhinged from a tractor and collided with a house.

Sgt Tim Hitchen from Nelson police said: “Although the road policing team do not consider this incident to be caused by excessive speed, PC Mark Dibb and the road policing officers attending the scene are planning to address some of the speeding issues in Blacko.”