Residents call for action over speeding cars after motorcycle crash

Beverley Lancaster's wrecked Renault Clio on Ormskirk Road, Pemberton
Beverley Lancaster's wrecked Renault Clio on Ormskirk Road, Pemberton

A motorist miraculously escaped unscathed after his car wrote off three parked vehicles at a notorious Wigan blackspot.

The early hours collision was the latest in a serious of spectacular crashes on Ormskirk Road, Pemberton, and fed-up residents today called for the council to do something to slow traffic down.

This is the last straw. I know we can’t pre-judge how the motorist in this latest crash was driving but there have been too many accidents on this stretch and vehicles need to be slowed down

The 31-year-old motorist in last Friday’s crash was arrested at the scene on suspicion of drink-driving.

Householders were woken at 2am by a loud bang and came out to see a black Ford Focus Zetec heading up the hill close to the former Carnegie Library where the road forks, had collided with three cars parked at the side of the road.

The Ford smashed first into a white Renault Clio belonging to 52-year-old office administrator Beverley Lancaster, in turn shunting it and ploughing into two Vauxhalls: an Astra and Zafira, belonging to other residents.

The Ford itself came to rest 100 yards further up the road and Beverley’s 26-year-old son Adam said the side of it was “ripped open like a sardine tin.”

He said: “It was a right mess. The police said that all the cars had been written off. They took the others away but my mum’s has had to stay put for now because it is undriveable.

“This is not the first time we have had crashes here either. There was another one a few months ago which took out a whole section of wall near the Carnegie.”

There was another incident in June 2015 when a stolen Mercedes crashed into a bus shelter and shops nearby. And only earlier this month businesses were complaining of speeding vehicles and crashes further up Ormskirk Road near to the Esso garage.

A neighbour of Mr Lancaster, who did not wish to be identified, said: “This is the last straw. I know we can’t pre-judge how the motorist in this latest crash was driving but there have been too many accidents on this stretch and vehicles need to be slowed down.

“Vehicles come up the relatively straight, wide section of Ormskirk Road from Newtown and then where the road forks they suddenly find themselves faced with a bend and very often double-parked cars. They then have to thread their speeding vehicle through quite a tight gap and sometimes they lose control.”

Mr Lancaster said: “While the police were at the scene of this accident there were several cars flying up Ormskirk Road which suddenly had to behave themselves when they saw who was there.”

And this reporter was lucky not to be hit by a speeding vehicle as he tried to get back into his car after attending the scene.

A police spokeswoman said: “Officers were called to reports of a collision on Ormrkirk Road, Pemberton, at 2am on Friday, involving a black Ford Focus Zetec, Renault Clio, Vauxhall Astra and Vauxhall Zafira.

“A 31-year-old man was later arrested on suspicion of drink-driving and has been bailed until February 8 pending further inquiries.”

Mark Tilley, assistant director of infrastructure at Wigan Council, said: “We have not received any concerns from residents about vehicle speeds in this area, but if residents are concerned we encourage them to contact us by emailing traffic@wigan.gov.uk.

“As part of The Deal we have introduced Community Speed Watch. We provide the necessary training and equipment to undertake the exercise, giving residents the opportunity to go out into their area of concern to record the speed of vehicles travelling through.

“If the speeds recorded show that there is a problem we will introduce temporary speed warning signs.”