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Woman's crash death investigated

PUBLISHED: 08:53 08 November 2001 | UPDATED: 10:49 03 March 2010

POLICE and fire officers are today investigating a head-on road crash which claimed the life of a woman driver.

The victim is thought to have died instantly when her Astra was in collision with a Vauxhall van on the busy A143 road at Barnardiston, near Haverhill, during yesterday morning's rush hour.

POLICE and fire officers are today investigating a head-on road crash which claimed the life of a woman driver.

The victim is thought to have died instantly when her Astra was in collision with a Vauxhall van on the busy A143 road at Barnardiston, near Haverhill, during yesterday morning's rush hour.

But the driver of the van and the motorist in another car which ended up in bushes after it swerved to avoid a collision escaped serious injuries.

Fireman and paramedics could do nothing to save the trapped woman, who had not been named last night but is thought to be from the Haverhill area.

Assistant Divisional Officer John Wilcock, who led the two crews from Haverhill and pump rescue tender from Bury St Edmunds, praised the teams of fire-fighters who helped free one of the surviving drivers and cut the dead woman from her car.

He said: "The driver of the Astra was dead when we arrived but we freed the driver of the van who was lightly trapped so paramedics could render first aid.

"The person who took evasive action to prevent himself being involved ended up in bushes had managed to get himself out."

Mr Wilcock said the crews, who also helped clear the wreckage from the road, did a good job in difficult circumstances and he reserved particular praise for two less experienced firefighters.

"We had a couple of younger members of the teams with us and the senior members were able to guide them and show them how crucial support and team spirit is."

He said fire investigators and police officers were still trying to piece together what caused the accident. But Mr Wilcock said it was at least partly down to the wet and slippery condition of the road at the time of the crash.

Wreckage and diesel from the crash, which closed the road for more than five hours, was finally cleared just after 1.30pm.

Police, who set up diversions, are now appealing for any witnesses to the 8.13am collision to contact them on 01284 774100.

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