A12 crash man arrested after air search

A MAN was taken into custody and another into hospital today after a van was involved in a head-on smash as it travelled the wrong way down a major Suffolk road.

A MAN was taken into custody and another into hospital today after a van was involved in a head-on smash as it travelled the wrong way down a major Suffolk road.

The 26-year-old man, who has not been named but is believed to come from Essex, was arrested on suspicion of drink-driving nearly two hours after the crash in connection with the incident after a Wattisham-based helicopter was scrambled to find him.

A spokeswoman from Suffolk police said: “Police were called at 5.27am by a member of the public reporting a vehicle driving southbound on the A12 near Copdock.

“At 5.29am a call was received telling police that the vehicle had collided with another vehicle.”

The smash, which involved a blue Volkswagen Touran and a white Mercedes van, left a scene of carnage as debris was scattered over a large section of the road, forcing the carriageway to be closed.

The spokeswoman said: “When police arrived at the scene the driver of one of the vehicles, a white Mercedes Sprinter, van-had left.”

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Police asked Wattisham-based RAF Search and Rescue team to help with the search and a Sea King helicopter was scrambled.

He said: “We were asked to search for someone who could not be found at the scene.”

The police spokeswoman added: “We cannot confirm where he was found at this stage.”

The occupant of the other vehicle, a 44-year-old man is also believed to come from Essex.

An ambulance crew was called in and gave the man first aid before he was transferred to hospital.

He was treated at Ipswich Hospital for facial and head injuries but his condition is not thought to be life threatening.

The white van carried the livery of Colchester-based company TES.

A spokesman for the firm declined to comment on the incident and told the Evening Star it had not been confirmed that one of their vehicles had been involved in the smash.

Police are appealing for witnesses to the incident. If you have any information call Suffolk Roads Policing Unit on 01473 613500.

Were you involved in the crash? Do you know the driver of the VW Touran? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

COMMUTERS faced long delays in the aftermath of the A12 road smash today.

As Suffolk police investigated the collision the A12 Ipswich-bound carriageway was closed for nearly two hours leaving long talkbacks.

Inspector Graham Burch, of Suffolk police control headquarters, said diversions were put in place.

He said: “Vehicles caught between East Bergholt turning and the Capel St Mary junction were delayed for some time.”

A spokeswoman for Suffolk police said: “The collision caused extensive delays on the A12 while police carried out investigations at the scene. Diversions were put in place at East Bergholt directing traffic towards the A137. The A12 was reopened at 7.20am. Substantial queues had built up.”

The spokeswoman thanked the public for their patience.

She said: “We would like to appeal to the public for their cooperation in incidents of this nature. If you or your loved one were involved in a crash like this you would want police to investigate the incident fully.”

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