Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting IGNEWS to 80360, or email
Couple died in head-on crash on A65 outside Skipton
A couple died after their Hyundai was involved in a head-on collision, which lifted their vehicle completely off its wheels and spun it round 360 degrees, an inquest in Skipton was told.
The Hyundai – containing Eileen and Stanley Shaw – had drifted across the A65 just outside Skipton into the path of a Skoda.
The combined speed of both cars was 100mph and the impact was such that their car ended up back on its own side of the road, the inquest heard on Thursday.
The engine compartment burst into flames and retired police officer John Callister, from the Wirral, jumped from his car, on the opposite side of the road, and tackled the blaze with an extinguisher. The driver of the Skoda Octavia, Desmond Westcott, of Church Street, Addingham, and his wife, who was in the passenger seat, were both trapped and needed to be released by the emergency services.
Mr Shaw, 83, and his 61-year-old wife, who was driving the Hyundai, were pronounced dead at the scene. Their two dogs were unhurt in the rear.
The crash happened as the Shaws, of Colne, were returning from their holiday caravan in Bishop Auckland.
As they approached the Grassington roundabout, their car moved across the single carriageway into the oncoming traffic.
Rob Turnbull, North Yorkshire’s western area coroner, said it was unclear why Mrs Shaw made such a manoeuvre, but it was likely to have been either fatigue or a momentary distraction.
There were reports that Mr Shaw was in poor health and Mrs Shaw had been suffering stress and fatigue in the six months before her death.
Mr Turnbull recorded a verdict that the couple died as a result of an accident on Sunday, June 13, this year.
Mr Wescott, who was driving home after visiting his son in Gargrave, said he saw the silver coloured car suddenly come across onto his side of the road.
“It loomed in front. It must have been close to me when it came out and I had little time to react. It came directly into my path,” he said.
His wife was seriously injured but she was now on the road to recovery.
Traffic Constable Paul Davenport who examined the scene said it appeared the Hyundai rotated clockwise by 360 degrees after the collision and was briefly airborne.