Student in A417 car crash backs country roads campaign

A car accident on the A417 that could have been fatal for 18-year-old Heather Armstrong has brought attention to Gloucestershire’s Road and Safety Partnerships country roads campaign.

The university student was on her way home to see her family when the incident took place and is thankful to survive such an intense collision.

“”It had been raining but I don’t know why I crashed. I just remember turning the wheel, hitting the central reservation and smashing into a tree. My car spun round and ended up facing the wrong way and I was knocked unconscious.”

Following what happened Heather found a woman driver parked down a hill a few minutes walk from the dual carriageway who helped her call the police and looked after her.

The 18-year-old was then taken to Gloucestershire Hospital and treated for whiplash and shock before returning home. The car was also written off following the accident.

At the scene the police told Heather’s family it was the worst accident they had attended that night.

The severity of the crash has affected Heather’s confidence behind the wheel and she has decided to tell her story today to raise awareness for the Country Roads campaign launched by Gloucestershire Road and Safety Partnership earlier this year.

The idea of the campaign is to make journeys in the country in Gloucestershire as safe as possible and to reduce the amount of dangerous driving and fatal accidents that take place everyday.

60% of fatalities that occur are on country roads alone and three people on average lose their lives on country roads each day. Astonishingly, the number of people that are killed on country roads is almost 10 times higher than the number of people killed in motorway accidents.

Heather hopes that her story will encourage drivers to use the roads as safely as possible and will draw attention to the work of the country road campaign.

Maria, the head of the Gloucestershire Road Safety Partnership, says “we are focussing our efforts on encouraging a change of attitude and behaviour of those who use our roads. Rather than automatically looking to making the roads safer let’s encourage people to use them more safely.”

For more information on the country road campaign see:

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