Ashfield council heroes prevent accident for driver on wrong side of M1

The road at Annesley near junction 27 of the M1.
The road at Annesley near junction 27 of the M1.

The quick thinking of heroic council officers at Annesley prevented a serious accident after a driver was spotted going the wrong way down the M1.

The elderly driver reportedly became confused after travelling a long distance, and even when leaving the M1 at junction 27, he remained on the wrong side of the road.

Several vehicles had to swerve to avoid his car on the A608 before community protection officers, employed by Ashfield District Council, came across him.

A council spokesperson said: “Realising the vehicle presented a danger to the public, they followed it at a safe distance while contacting the police.

“They got the driver’s attention by flashing the lights of their vehicle and when he stopped, they approached his car and removed the keys from the ignition.”

The drama unfolded at about 7.30 pm on Thursday last week. Now, the police, who had earlier received reports about the wayward car on the M1 but had been unable to locate it, have lavished praise on the council officers.

Insp Simon Allen said: “Without their actions, it could have been a serious incident, which doesn’t bear thinking about. We commend the officers for their actions and thank them on behalf of the force.

“The man was taken to King’s Mill Hospital after concerns for his welfare. We are now investigating his driving and have referred the matter to the DVLA.”

Coun Daniel Williamson, of the council, said: “These two officers should be highly commended for their swift actions. Incidents like this demonstrate the effectiveness of the council and police working together.”