Norfolk

Prince Philip's crash: Speed camera delay on crash road

Prince Philip driving near Sandringham Estate on 19 January 2019 Image copyright Albanpix
Image caption Prince Philip, 97, was involved in a crash near Sandringham

The installation of speed cameras on the road where the Duke of Edinburgh was involved in a crash was delayed for months, it has emerged.

Prince Philip, 97, was unhurt in the crash near King's Lynn, Norfolk, on 17 January which left two women injured.

The county's Safety Camera Partnership had agreed to fund cameras on the A149 between King's Lynn and Snettisham.

They were to be installed last March, but this was delayed by councillors who wanted to discuss additional measures.

Norfolk Police Chief Constable Simon Bailey wrote to the council in September asking why the cameras had been delayed despite "evidence and analysis" supporting the move.

Police and Crime Commissioner Lorne Green asked: "How many accidents could have been avoided if the cameras had been installed when approval was given?

"What is the cause of the delay?"

Martin Wilby, chairman of the council's environment committee, said: "Local councillors represent local people. We are held accountable for the decisions we make.

"When councillors became aware of the planned camera scheme, they were clear that it should be paused to allow for a range of safety measures, in addition to safety cameras, to be swiftly considered.

"These will be much more effective than the original proposal."

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Debris at the scene where Prince Philip was involved in a traffic accident

In the last three years there have been three deaths on the stretch between King's Lynn and Snettisham and and 30 injuries.

The county council met the day after the accident to discuss safety measures on the road.

At the meeting - arranged before the duke's crash - it agreed to cut the speed limit on the road from 60mph to 50mph, bring in average speed cameras and make improvements to road junctions.

Prince Philip's Land Rover Freelander landed on its side after the collision with a Kia.

A nine-month-old boy in the other car was uninjured. The driver, a 28-year-old woman, had cuts while a 45-year-old female passenger broke her wrist.

Norfolk Police said earlier it was standard policy to breath test drivers involved in collisions and both had provided negative readings.

Two days later, pictures in the Daily Mail and the Sun appeared to show the duke driving alone on a road near the entrance to the Sandringham estate in a replacement Freelander, without a seat belt.

A spokeswoman for the Norfolk Constabulary said the force was aware of the photographs and had spoken to the driver.

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