‘Deepest sympathy’ after man killed as jeep hits tree

Police at the scene of the fatal RTC in Coleraine. .PICTURES MATT STEELE/MCAULEY MULTIMEDIA. INCR 11-701-CON
Police at the scene of the fatal RTC in Coleraine. .PICTURES MATT STEELE/MCAULEY MULTIMEDIA. INCR 11-701-CON

Sympathy has been expressed after a man in his 70s died as the result of a road collision in Coleraine.

The one-vehicle incident happened on the Curragh Road at about 3pm on Tuesday.

The Curragh Road was closed in both directions for a period following the incident. INCR 11-702-CON

The Curragh Road was closed in both directions for a period following the incident. INCR 11-702-CON

The man died at the scene after the vehicle – which the police described as a Land Rover jeep –hit a tree.

The road runs roughly parallel to the River Bann between Castleroe to the north and Agivey to the south.

By co-incidence, John Dallat, newly-elected SDLP MLA for East Londonderry, happened to be travelling along the same road perhaps around an hour after the incident.

Mr Dallat came across the scene, where the emergency services had set up a cordon. His vehicle was about two cars back from the cordon.

He said that the ambulance, police and fire brigade were there, with firefighters cutting open the truck which had veered into Castleroe Forest which abutts the road.

He said the speed limit was 60pm and that the incident happened on a bend, adding that it had been raining and it “wasn’t ideal conditions” for driving – though it was impossible to tell if that might have been a factor in the crash.

At the time it seemed apparent it was a “very, very serious situation,” but did not know it had been fatal.

“I think everyone will want to express their deepest sympathy,” he said last night.

DUP councillor Michelle Knight-McQuillan lives about five miles away and said she travels the road every day.

There have been fatal accidents on it in the past, she said..

“It’s not a nice scene to come down and see,” she said. “With the road closed off and the blue lights flashing, and to know somewhere there’s a family breaking their hearts.”

The PSNI have asked anyone who witnessed the collision or who has any information to contact the Collision Investigation Unit on 101, quoting reference number 753 07/03/17.