Fatal crash prompts more calls for A697 safety improvements

Coun Glen Sanderson
Coun Glen Sanderson

A road-safety campaigner believes more still needs to be done to improve the A697, after another fatal accident along the stretch.

A 40-year-old man, who has not yet been identified by police, was killed in the incident last Friday.

The collision happened between Longframlington and Longhorsley and involved a white Kia Optima and a HGV.

Emergency services attended and the driver of the car was pronounced dead at the scene.

A male passenger was taken to hospital by air ambulance, but his injuries were not believed to be life-threatening.

The A697 was closed for four hours to allow officers to investigate the incident and recover the vehicles involved.

The collision happened on the southbound carriageway, 300 metres south of the C135 road to Todburn, and police were alerted at around 4.50pm.

They are now appealing for any witnesses to the incident. Anyone with information should call police on 101, quoting reference 754 01/04/16.

Following the collision, Coun Glen Sanderson – who has been calling for improvements on the A697 for a number of years – reiterated the need to make the stretch safer .

The ward member for Longhorsley said: “This tragic incident underlines, yet again, that the A697 is one of the most dangerous rural A-class roads in the whole country.

“I do appreciate that Northumberland County Council has taken steps to help at certain areas of the A697, but I believe that there is still much more to be done to make it safer. The problem is exacerbated by the fact that more drivers are using the route as an alternative to the A1.

“I hope that the county council will re-look at the work that can be done.”