THE SENTINEL Monday January 9, 2012
Driver thrown 60ft in crash A DRIVER suffered multiple injuries after he was hurled 60 feet from his car when it ploughed into a row of trees. The man, believed to be in his 20s and from Stoke-onTrent, was taken to the University Hospital of North Staffordshire after the crash on the A520 Longton Road, Stone, at 2.15am on Saturday. His condition was described as “stable” over the weekend. His female passenger was freed from the silver Renault Mégane by firefighters from Longton and Stone before being taken to hospital. A spokesman for West Midlands Ambulance Service said: “On arrival at the scene crews found a single vehicle that had been in collision with a number of trees. “The driver was found on the floor 60 feet away from the vehicle. He was treated for serious multiple injuries to his chest, neck, pelvis and potential internal injuries. “Once freed, the woman was immobilised and conveyed to the same hospital.” The crash took place close to Vanity Lane by a stretch known as ‘waterworks bend’. The road was closed for four hours. A force spokesman said: “We are now appealing for any witnesses.” Anyone with information should call Sergeant 3972 John King on 0300 123 4455.
DOUBLE STANDARDS? The camera car in Huntbach Street, Hanley, and, inset, spotted by reader Clive Shaw outside the Potteries Shopping Centre.
Spy car is caught parking ‘illegally’ BY ALEX CAMPBELL AND LUCY ROUE email@example.com
PROTEST: Jean Bowers.
200 sign up to save mayor A PETITION calling on Stokeon-Trent City Council to shelve plans to abolish the ceremonial role of the Lord Mayor has been signed by more than 200 people. Campaigners will be outside the Potteries Shopping Centre, in Hanley, between 9.30am and noon on Wednesday in a final push for support. The city council wants to save £130,000 by stripping the Lord Mayor’s role of its ceremonial functions and reducing the responsibility to attend events along with the chauffeur, car and secretary. Just 33 people have signed an online petition against the cut, which forms part of a £24 million savings plan, but more than 200 have backed a paper petition circulated by ex-Lord Mayors Jean Bowers, Derek Capey and former councillor Kieran Clarke. The city council’s public consultation on the cuts proposals ends on January 13. A scrutiny committee has already refused to give its backing to the mayoral cut.
A SPY car which has raked in hundreds of thousands of pounds by snaring motorists as they drive through bus lanes is repeatedly parking ‘illegally’ in the city centre. The Sentinel has captured Stoke-onTrent City Council’s CCTV enforcement vehicle in loading-only bays in Huntbach Street, Hanley, and on double yellow lines. Shoppers have criticised the council for its double standards in allowing wardens to leave the spy car in places where regular drivers would be fined. The authority says the vehicle is exempt from traffic rules and is deployed ‘in the interests of safety’. Shopper Sabrina Lillie, aged 21, an administration assistant from Porthill, said: “I can understand why the council is monitoring the situation because driving in bus lanes can cause crashes. “But they should also practice what they preach. It’s not fair if they’re going to fine someone for driving offences and then go and do it themselves. If they want to be taken seriously, they should abide by their own rules.” The car has hit more than 5,600 motorists with £60 fines for using a disputed 20-metre bus lane which cuts out a 1.3-mile detour to reach two car parks from
Council accused of double standards a vantage point in Huntbach Street, which is intended exclusively for commercial vehicles delivering goods to nearby shops. The car has also been spotted on double yellow lines outside the Potteries Shopping Centre. Pam Harrison, of Oversley Road, Fegg Hayes, was one driver who received a £60 fine for using Huntbach Street. The 62-year-old, pictured below with her fine, said: “The car was parked on double yellow lines when it clocked me. The whole situation is just laughable. It makes me not want to go into Hanley anymore.” It emerged last week that bailiffs have been called in to recover fines from hundreds of motorists who have refused to pay bus lane fines. The council has issued more than 8,761 tickets for bus lane offences across the city centre since bringing in the £80,000 spy car in October 2010 – pocketing between £196,000 and £391,000 from the 6,524 motorists who have paid up. Philip Barnes, aged 34, an Army sergeant from Wolstanton, said: “It’s a bit of a contradiction if they’re issuing traffic fines and then have been caught out themselves. “They should be brought to task like anyone else. If the council’s giving out these penalties, it
should set a good example.” Ian Tamburello, the city council’s strategic manager for enforcement, said: “Enforcement vehicles are exempt from restrictions on highways when they are carrying out enforcement duties. “Wherever possible, the enforcement vehicles park legally and only park in restricted areas in exceptional circumstances. “If people didn’t break the road regulations, there would be no need for enforcement vehicles to visit the street. “Huntbach Street has double yellow lines and the safest place for the vehicle to park without causing a hazard is in a loading bay. “Should vehicles making deliveries to premises on the street need to use the bay, then the enforcement vehicle will move from the space.”
What do you think? Email us at letters@ thesentinel.co.uk
Bedroom drama as couple freed by firefighters A COUPLE received an early morning visit from firefighters – after getting locked inside their own bedroom. The couple’s son alerted emergency services after his dad began shouting that they were trapped inside the upstairs bedroom of the home in Hartshill Road, Hartshill. The incident, which happened at about 8am yesterday morning, saw a
crew from Newcastle force open the bedroom door using specialist tools. It had become stuck due to a fault with the handle. Firefighters said the couple, who were described as middle aged, were “embarrassed” by the affair. A spokesman for the crew said: “We’re not sure exactly what had happened but they were trapped in the
bedroom upstairs. Apparently the door had not been in the best state of repair for quite a while. “We could have used a ladder and gone in through the window but either way we’d have had to damage the door. “They were a bit embarrassed. It’s not every morning you have three fire men in your bedroom, but they were over the moon to get out.”
In brief CREWE: Supermarket giant Tesco has announced the opening date of its new store. The firm will launch a replacement Tesco Extra, in Vernon Way, Crewe, next Monday after construction work was completed. The 60,000sq ft Tesco Extra store, which will have a 300strong workforce, replaces a smaller shop which closed in May. Since then, shoppers have been using a temporary Tesco supermarket set up in nearby Lockitt Street. The new store includes a phone shop, cafe and extended food, electrical and homeware. Store manager Natalie Salt said: “I am delighted to be able to start putting the finishing touches to the new store. “My team and I have been working hard over the past few months to ensure that we are able to deliver a bigger and better store to the residents of Crewe.” The official launch of Tesco Extra will be at 10am when the Crewe and Nantwich Gymnastics Club will receive a £1,000 donation. The store will be open all day and night during weekdays and on Saturdays and from 10am until 4pm on Sundays. KIDSGROVE: Plans to build 10 houses on a former pub site have been given the go ahead. DC Land (Kidsgrove) has been granted permission for the development in William Road, Kidsgrove. The ‘traditional’ homes will go up on the former Galley pub which was bulldozed in 2007. Fourteen car park spaces will be created. Newcastle Borough Council passed the plans with conditions, including a £6,000 contribution to the Newcastle (Urban) Transport and Development Strategy. A contribution of £29,430 will also go towards open space improvements and maintenance. BENTILEE: Firefighters were called to a shed and fence fire on Saturday. The incident took place outside a property on Shenfield Green shortly after 1.45pm. Crews from Hanley and Longton attended the blaze and left the scene just after 2.35pm.