‘We were nearly wiped out’ - couple in earlier crash call for safety measures on A140 at Erpingham after latest tragedy

Margaret and Richard Rushmer, who run the Alby Horse Shoes Inn, pictured by the A140. The fatal acci

Margaret and Richard Rushmer, who run the Alby Horse Shoes Inn, pictured by the A140. The fatal accident happened at about the spot of the poplar tree seen in the background between them. Picture: ALEX HURRELL - Credit: Archant

A couple who miraculously escaped serious injury in a three-car crash are calling for urgent safety measures following a driver's death on the same notorious stretch of the A140.

The scene of the fatal accident on the A140 at Erpingham. Picture: ALEX HURRELL

The scene of the fatal accident on the A140 at Erpingham. Picture: ALEX HURRELL - Credit: Archant

Richard and Margaret Rushmer run the Alby Horse Shoes pub, which is only a stone's throw from Friday night's tragedy.

The Fiat driver, understood to be a man in his 70s, was pronounced dead at the scene, near the entrance to Alby Crafts, after his car and a sugar beet lorry collided.

The circumstances of the tragedy have not been made public but the incident has renewed long-running calls for a speed-limit reduction on the road.

For Mr and Mrs Rushmer, the accident brought back the horror of their own recent narrow escape less than a mile away on the A140 at Hanworth, between Aylsham and Cromer.

Margaret and Richard Rushmer, who run the Alby Horse Shoes Inn, pictured by the A140. The fatal acci

Margaret and Richard Rushmer, who run the Alby Horse Shoes Inn, pictured by the A140. The fatal accident happened at about the spot of the poplar tree seen in the background between them. Picture: ALEX HURRELL - Credit: Archant


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Mr Rushmer said on November 19 he had been signalling and waiting to turn right into White Post Road when a car smashed into the back of their vehicle, shunting them into the path of an on-coming car which struck their passenger door.

Mrs Rushmer was trapped, lost consciousness and had to be freed by the emergency services and taken to hospital.

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'We could have been wiped out,' said Mr Rushmer .

'We've been here 14 years and this latest crash is the fourth fatality, on top of many other accidents. We've campaigned for a speed reduction from 50mph but highways say it's an A road and it can't be done, but we will now ask again.'

Mrs Rushmer added: 'If it's an A road it needs to be brought up to A road standard - widened, and with turning lanes.' The couple said there were some seven junctions and entrances onto the A140 in a stretch of less than half a mile.

Steven Wade, chairman of Alby Parish Council, said about five years ago the council, together with Erpingham Parish Council, had asked for a reduction along the stretch from 60mph to 40mph but it had only been cut to 50mph.

Within a short stretch there was a garage, two bus stops, a bend, a pub, the Alby Crafts complex, several other businesses, and seven junctions.

'There's an awful lot going on and it's an accident-prone area,' Mr Wade added.

Have you been involved in an accident on that stretch of the A140? Contact alex.hurrell@archant.co.uk

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