Road chiefs take action after A19 death smash

CHANGES NEEDED: The fatal crash on the A19.
CHANGES NEEDED: The fatal crash on the A19.

ROAD chiefs investigating the safety of a stretch of dual carriageway say they will take into account the concerns of a coroner.

Hartlepool’s coroner Malcolm Donnelly called for a ban on right hand turns at the junction of the A19 and Dalton Back Road, on the outskirts of town.

Scotland Lions' Keri Holdsworth crosses the line for a try during training

Scotland Lions' Keri Holdsworth crosses the line for a try during training

The recommendation came following the death of Scottish rugby player Keri Holdsworth who died the after a horror road smash at the spot around 4.30pm on Friday, June 13, last year.

Mr Donnelly held an inquest into the 36-year-old’s death and announced that he would be writing to the Highways Agency and Hartlepool Borough Council to express his wish for the right-hand manoeuvres both onto and off the A19 at Dalton Piercy to be prohibited.

Today a spokeswoman for the Highways Agency, which recently commissioned a study into A19 junctions between the A689 at Wynyard and the A179 at Sheraton, welcomed Mr Donnelly’s input.

She said: “We will consider all of the coroner’s recommendations in detail and respond in due course.

“The issue is already being looked at in a review that should be completed later this year.”

A Hartlepool council spokesman also echoed its support.

A spokesman said: “The A19 comes under the jurisdiction of the Highways Agency rather than the council but we are naturally very keen to provide whatever support we can to help ensure that the area where the accident occurred and also the Elwick junction are made as safe as possible.

“To that end we too will be looking closely at Mr Donnelly’s recommendations as well as the outcome of the Highways Agency’s study once that is completed.”

The inquest heard that the cause of her tragic death was as a result of brain, chest and leg injuries and hypovolemic shock. The verdict was “accidental death”.

Mr Donnelly told the hearing that Keri was driving north-bound on the A19 and there was a vehicle in front of her which had to brake suddenly because there was a van coming out of the junction in question.For some reason she was not able to retain control of her vehicle and crossed the central reservation and ended up in the fast lane of the southbound A19 carriageway, colliding with a BMW car almost head on.