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Woman suffers life threatening injuries in Askerswell crash
1:30am Monday 26th August 2013 in News
A WOMAN is fighting for her life after Land Rover towing a caravan crashed off the A35 between Dorchester and Bridport.
She was a passenger in a Land Rover Discovery which overturned on the road near Askerswell at 1.05pm on Saturday.
The woman, a 48 year old from the Poole area, suffered life threatening injuries and was airlifted to Southampton General Hospital by air ambulance.
The driver, a 52 year old man from the Poole area, suffered minor injuries and was taken to the Dorset County Hospital in Dorchester.
An 11 year old boy who was also a passenger in the vehicle escaped injury in the crash.
Police said that the vehicle rolled several times after losing control and are appealing for witnesses.
Motorists faced major delays and diversions after the crash as the road was closed for several hours into Saturday evening.
A police spokesman said: "At 1.05pm a single vehicle collision occurred on the A35 at Askerswell.
"A Land Rover Discovery towing a caravan left the carriageway, causing the vehicle to roll several times.
"The driver, a 52 year man from the Poole area, suffered minor injuries and was taken to the Dorset County Hospital.
"One of the passengers, a 48 year old woman from the Poole area, suffered life threatening injuries and is currently in Southampton hospital.
"An 11 year old boy also in the vehicle has suffered no injuries.
"The road was closed for several hours while the investigation took place.”
The woman, who is believed to have suffered head injuries, was flown to Southampton by the Devon Air Ambulance.
The A35 was closed in both directions between Shipton Gorge and Monkey's Jump for several hours.
Congestion built up in Maiden Newton, Dorchester and the on the coast road as motorists were diverted around the scene.
A spokeswoman for the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Trust said: "We attended with two rapid response vehicles and two ambuances and a helicopter was also on scene.
"The helicopter took a very seriously injured patient to Southampton with a head trauma.
"One child and an adult were also taken to Dorset County Hospital."
Firefighters also attended the incident.
A spokesperson for Dorset Fire and Rescue Service said crews from Bridport attended and a casualty was extricated from the Land Rover.
Coun Ron Coatsworth, who is the county council ward member for the area, said he was caught up in congestions in Maiden Newton, Loders and Eggardon Hill.
“It was dreadful but I realised what had happened when I saw all of the cars were holidaymakers.”
He added: “It is a dangerous road.
“I drive along it nearly every day.”
He added: “The number of casualties had gone down on the A35 but seem to have gone up again recently.
“We did have the No Excuse campaign which was very successful but it does not seem so prominent as it used to be.”
Mary Bull, who lives just along the road at Woodland Farm Kennels, said: “There are a lot of accidents on this stretch of the road from Monkey's Jump to Bridport.”
She added: “Maybe we need more speed limit signs or extra double white lines.”
Mrs Bull said that the Police and Crime Commissioner Martyn Underhill was due to hold a meeting about the number of serious crashes recently but wondered what could be done with cuts in funding.
Witnesses and anyone with information is asked to call PC Blaken at the police on 101 quoting reference number 207.
"Any witnesses to the collision or the manner of driving prior to the collision are asked to call PC Gareth Blaken on 101."
THE crash came just days after a fatal smash on a nearby stretch of the A35 at Askerswell.
One man died and another was seriously injured after the crash involving three vans on the road on Monday evening.
Police said the 49-year-old driver of a white Iveco van died at the scene outside Woodlands Farm at about 6pm.
The dead man, from Cleveland, had been driving an Express Blinds van.
Another man, a 32-year-old from Bournemouth driving a white Ford Transit van signwritten Drain Doctor, suffered serious but not life threatening injuries.
He was cut free from his cab by firefighters before being airlifted from the scene by the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance and taken to Southampton Hospital.
A third man, a 48-year-old from the Wareham area driving a silver Volkswagen Transporter, suffered minor injuries and was taken by ambulance to hospital in Dorchester.
The collision happened past the dual carriageway stretch by the old Travellers Rest, two miles east of Bridport.
Witnesses to the collision or the manner of driving of any of the vehicles prior to the collision should contact PC Rhys Griffiths of the traffic police at Weymouth on 101.
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