Episode 5 A1: Britain's Longest Road


Episode 5

Documentary series following the people who work on the A1. Police race to the scene of a head-on collision, a milk lorry overturns, and a reckless speeder is tracked down.


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Transcript


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The A1, Britain's longest road...

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..stretching almost 400 miles from the City of London

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to the heart of the Scottish capital.

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Connecting two nations and passing through 18 counties,

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it's an unrivalled highway,

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used by hundreds of thousands of vehicles every day.

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We're going southbound down the A1 on the northbound carriageway.

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But not all journeys go to plan.

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I thought, "I'm going to lose my life."

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Cars are coming close.

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It is a dangerous place to be.

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Lives can hang in the balance.

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The rear-end of that vehicle is unrecognisable.

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This is actually the bodywork of the car.

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24 hours a day...

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It's not a safe place, here.

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..there's a team of people who keep us safe from harm.

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The police...

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..response teams...

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We don't know whether they've got the road closed

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-or we don't know what's happened.

-..and traffic officers...

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Keep going.

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..keeping Britain's most iconic road...

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-Get out!

-..on the move.

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Substantially damaged flatbed truck in lane two.

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The A1, the monster that it is, will start to return to normal.

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Coming up...

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a race against time to the scene of a head-on collision...

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Two vehicles coming together on a road like this,

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you're looking at a 100mph-plus impact.

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MAN CRIES OUT

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..a lorry overturns and brings chaos to the Great North Road...

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So he's had to try and swerve to avoid and he's overturned.

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..and a reckless speeder...

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88mph in a 50.

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..putting workers' lives at risk.

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You're barrelling into their roadworks doing 88mph.

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Seriously not cool.

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The A1 is a 400-mile superhighway,

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a key artery from Central London through the fields of Lincolnshire,

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past the northern powerhouses of Leeds and Newcastle

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before crossing the border

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and ending at Edinburgh's Waverley Station.

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In all, 15 police forces

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are tasked with keeping Britain's longest road safe.

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At its most northerly point, it's the job of Police Scotland.

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Nearly 20 miles from Edinburgh,

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PCs Stewart Logan and Davie Johnson are patrolling the A1...

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..and it's not long before they're

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called to a crash on the road that runs alongside the main carriageway.

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Roger, mate.

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Yeah, we are listening. We're en route from Haddington.

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With one of the casualties thought to be in a serious condition,

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Stewart and Davie need to get there fast.

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We're en route to what's been deemed a head-on collision

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on this road, which is the A6093,

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which is running parallel to the A1.

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As you can see, it's just a two-way undivided road

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but it'll be a national speed limit

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so you'll be looking at vehicles travelling legally up to 60mph,

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and then when you're looking at two vehicles coming together on

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a road like this, you're looking at

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potentially a 100mph-plus impact

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because of the nature of the speeds.

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Within minutes of getting the call,

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Stewart and Davie are at the scene of the crash.

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It looks like the van appears to have pulled out into the path

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of this but we'll jump out and we'll assess it from there.

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It's clear this is a serious incident

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and, with no ambulance on the scene yet,

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the first priority is to check on the injured.

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-Hi, Fraser.

-Chap here's complaining of chest pains...

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-Yeah.

-..and pain in his leg.

-OK.

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Alan's going to get an ETA for the ambulance

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just to find out what's happening.

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-Is this the driver of the van here?

-Yes. Uh-huh.

-Right, OK.

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A 72-year-old man is in the back of the car in considerable pain

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but police don't want to move him until paramedics arrive.

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Hello, chap, have you got a wee second?

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In the meantime, Stewart interviews the van driver.

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What's happened, then?

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Uh-huh.

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So you were coming this way?

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Yeah.

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And she was sitting, waiting to turn right?

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Oh, right.

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Oh, right.

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Right, OK. Right, no problem at all.

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Are you all right in yourself?

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The seat belt or whatever or just the impact from it?

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Right, OK. No bother.

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What to do, sir, is you just take your time.

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We've got an ambulance coming so we'll get you checked out anyway

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cos you've obviously had a heck of a dunt.

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The ambulance has arrived and the crew start work on releasing

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the badly injured man from the car.

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I can support you here. Just take your time. OK.

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MAN CRIES OUT

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The old gentleman who's in the vehicle is going to be treated

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by the emergency staff from the ambulance

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and then we'll get an assessment on what we need to do

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but, at the minute, we'll leave the situation locked down

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because, again, we need to be tentative because of his age.

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MAN CRIES OUT

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Do you want the Fire Service?

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-The thing is, it's going to take that long.

-Yeah.

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See if you got a board under his backside

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and slide him onto the board.

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-Let's see if I can do anything.

-Wait just now.

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Get the board under his bum and just slide him with the board.

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MAN CRIES OUT

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With the passenger in so much pain,

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the ambulance crew are struggling to free him from the car.

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If they can't release him soon, Stewart will have no choice

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but to call the fire brigade to cut him out.

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The next half-hour will be critical.

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The A1 is the scene of more than 2,000 accidents a year.

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A large proportion of these occur where there's the greatest

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volume of traffic, such as the stretch of road near Durham.

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It's 7.30am and Highways England traffic officers

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Peter Senior and Scott Wilson

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are heading into heavy rush-hour traffic

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when they get a report of a serious incident north of Durham.

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We'll head south in case 42 need any assistance. Over.

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An overturned lorry could mean serious injuries

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and, with a fire engine rushing towards the scene,

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it doesn't look good.

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We'll hit all the emergency lights and we'll pick our way through.

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Even though the accident is on the other side of the road,

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Peter and Scott are finding it difficult

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to battle through the traffic.

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This is all down to rubbernecking at the minute.

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And as Peter and Scott arrive at the scene, it's clear why.

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You can see the incident coming up now on the opposite carriageway.

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A 17-tonne truck has overturned after colliding with a 4x4...

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..and is now on its side,

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blocking a lane of traffic and the hard shoulder.

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I'll just hold back here until you find out what's going on.

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As they arrive,

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Scott's first priority is to find out if there are any injuries.

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Now, then, how are you doing?

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Amazingly, the lorry driver is shaken but unhurt

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after what sounds like a terrifying accident.

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He was overtaking an LGV and he pulled into lane one,

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not expecting to see anything,

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then there was, for some reason, a bit of traffic

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so he's had to try and swerve to avoid,

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clipped one of them and he's overturned.

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Thankfully, there's been no injuries

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but he's had a lucky escape, to be honest.

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And paramedics have also given the driver of the silver 4x4

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the all-clear.

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With traffic still moving past,

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Scott's keen to get him off the carriageway,

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so police escort him and his damaged vehicle away.

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With everyone safe,

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Peter and Scott can now concentrate on trying to clear the carriageway.

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We're keeping lane two running for the moment.

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We've got recovery en route for the LGV.

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When it's getting righted, we will have to put a full stop

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on the carriageway just to get it back on its wheels.

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But moving the lorry could be harder than they think.

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Scott's just discovered its beginning to leak its load

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all over the carriageway.

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Yes, yes. That is containing milk

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and it has started to go into the gully.

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The lorry was transporting 3,000 litres of milk

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from Leeds to Gateshead.

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It may not sound like a hazardous fluid but if it's not stopped

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it could have an impact on the local environment.

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A little bit can cause a big danger.

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If it gets into drains and gets into the water works,

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it could kill fish and all sorts of things.

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Using a specialist absorbent,

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the team mop up the leaks as best they can...

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..but as the recovery cranes arrive to right the lorry,

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Peter's worried that disturbing the load

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could make the spill even worse.

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It's full of milk cartons. Some of them have burst open.

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We won't really know anything else now until they right the vehicle.

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If the whole load spills,

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Peter and Scott could face an environmental threat

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on top of the traffic problems already unfolding.

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It's going to be a testing morning for the traffic officers.

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More than 100 miles south in Bradford,

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a young Olympic hopeful is about to set off on a very important journey

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down the A1.

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23-year-old Pippa Allen is preparing her horse, Hope Springs,

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for one of the most important competitions

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of their showjumping career.

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They've qualified for the under-23s British Championship final at

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the London International Horse Show,

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the biggest event in the showjumping calendar.

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I love riding him cos you feel like

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you can jump any height of fence on him.

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He's really brave and he's actually...

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For a big horse, he's really fast in the jump offs, which is handy.

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Pippa's been riding since the tender age of one and she's

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now a world-class competitor.

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In the final, she'll be up against the best riders in the country,

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including her younger sister.

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My sister, Millie, is also competing there. She's 19.

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She's a bit younger than me but we're always in the same

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classes and it gets really competitive between us.

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Perhaps fortunately, then,

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the sisters aren't travelling together today.

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Do you want my ropes as well or should I just leave them there?

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Instead, along for the ride are friend and fellow competitor Sally,

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her horse, Maddy, and two other horses.

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Top-class showjumpers like these can be worth more than £100,000

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and take around seven years to train,

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so ensuring they don't injure themselves in transit is vital.

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These specially designed travel boots will protect

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Hope Springs' fragile legs on the 200-mile journey.

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Responsible for transporting these precious beasts and their riders

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is Pippa's boyfriend, Stevie.

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With a 5.5-hour journey ahead, they're keen to hit the road.

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And, as they set off, Stevie has high hopes for his passengers.

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Yeah, it would be good to see if one of the girls won,

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Pippa or Sally. It'd be great.

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It be great if one of them won. It'd be good.

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Make the ride home a lot easier!

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With competitions all over the country,

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the A1's a well-travelled route for the showjumpers,

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and Stevie's priority is always his passengers in the back.

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When you're travelling with horses, you've just got to make sure

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you leave enough room from the vehicles in front

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cos obviously you don't want to be stopping too sudden, you know.

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You try and ease everything when you're slowing down,

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just take your time.

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We have the camera in the truck to check the horses, make sure they're

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travelling OK, and just try and keep it as smooth as you can, really.

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But while the horses appear calm, in the front,

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with every passing mile, competition nerves are starting to build.

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I think it's a good partnership so hopefully we'll be lucky on the day.

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He feels on top form, so fingers crossed.

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There's a lot at stake and the peace in the lorry could shortly

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be shattered as they've arranged to pick up another horse

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that can be a bit of a handful.

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I think this horse is a little bit tricky to load.

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He doesn't like travelling on his own and he won't go in the trailer.

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I'm going to put him in the second space

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and hopefully he should be fine.

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Stevie can only hope the horse doesn't literally kick off...

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as they continue along the highway in pursuit of sporting glory.

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As their journey south continues in relative calm,

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the same can't be said more than 200 miles north near Edinburgh.

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A1 patrol officers PCs Stewart Logan and Davey Johnson are

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at the scene of a horrific head-on collision between a car and a van.

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Luckily, the driver of the van has escaped with just minor injuries.

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But a 72-year-old passenger is still in the back of the car

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with a suspected broken leg and suffering severe abdominal pain.

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PASSENGER GROANS IN PAIN

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Aggh! No!

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He urgently needs medical attention.

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You've not far to go.

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So far, the man's injuries have made paramedics apprehensive about moving

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him from the vehicle, but they need to transport him to hospital.

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PASSENGER GROANS

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With his condition not improving,

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they decide he'll have to make a painful exit from the car.

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GROANING CONTINUES

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Finally, after 15 minutes, he's free from the vehicle.

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Is most of the pain coming from your left leg?

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-Leg and his chest.

-Just the left.

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The injured man is an American tourist on holiday

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with his wife and friends.

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They were due to fly home in the next 24 hours,

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but with the man needing hospital treatment,

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it could be weeks before he's well enough to travel.

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The main concern is down to age. The gentleman's 72.

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People's bodies just can't cope with the same level of injury

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as younger people can, so we therefore have to be quite tentative

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about how we go about dealing with it.

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The man's injuries are serious,

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but Stewart knows things could have been significantly worse.

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In a collision of this level, if both vehicles had been older,

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then, yes, you'll be looking

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probably at more serious injuries on the...

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certainly the driver of the Nissan,

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because they'll have taken quite a whack of the impact.

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Everybody involved in the crash was wearing a seat belt

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and that will have saved their lives.

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You could be the driver of this van, driving along the road,

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minding completely your own business, and then two seconds later

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a vehicle crosses your path and you're involved

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in a head-on collision with it.

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Anyone who thinks, "I'll be OK, I'm only going two minutes up the road,"

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well, this is the consequence of the things that we witness

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and you just never know.

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As the man is taken to hospital,

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Stewart and Davey get to work clearing the road,

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so that some of the local traffic can get moving again.

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We're going to tow this vehicle back a bit, using our X5,

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so that we can at least get the road partially open,

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so we're going to connect the towing eye up, drag the vehicle back,

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and at least we can get a contraflow going on one side of the road.

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While the clear-up continues, some of the surrounding roads

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must stay closed, but not everyone wants to follow the police signs.

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If you wait there for us.

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Can you wait there for us?

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We have road closed signs at both ends of this road

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and as you can see,

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people come along and just say, "Oh, well, I'll just drive through it..."

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-All right.

-All right.

-OK.

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..paying absolutely no consideration for what that sign means.

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It means the road's closed, so if it says closed,

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it means you cannae drive through it.

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Is there still a sign in the middle of the road

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-saying the road's closed?

-Yes.

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'You know, you have to remember'

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there's people's safety at risk here.

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I'm out sweeping up debris in the middle of the road

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and you're coming battering along on a national speed limit road

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just because you've decided you can't be bothered

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complying with a road closed sign.

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You know, they're there for a reason, so if you see one,

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then please do what it says.

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Before long, the van and the car are recovered

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and the road's treated to soak up any oil and fuel spillages.

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As the traffic starts to flow again,

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Stewart and Davey can finally head back to the A1.

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Nearly 120 miles south of rural Scotland

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is one of the busiest sections of the A1 near Durham.

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It's here traffic officers Peter Senior and Scott Wilson

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are dealing with a serious accident.

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A lorry carrying 3,000 litres of milk has overturned.

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The driver has escaped unhurt,

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but his load is leaking all over the carriageway,

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with potentially devastating effects for local wildlife.

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It's a dramatic scene and passing drivers are slowing down to look,

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so Scott needs to try and keep everything moving.

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People slow up and it is a danger and it also hinders the traffic

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and makes traffic further back slow down and there can

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be further shunts further and further back,

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not even close to this incident.

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So, yes, it is a safety concern -

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rubbernecking and slowing down.

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It's going to take two heavy recovery vehicles

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to right the 17-tonne lorry

0:20:030:20:04

and the road will need to be clear.

0:20:040:20:07

We do have to stop the whole carriageway

0:20:080:20:10

to get the vehicle back on its wheels, so it is going to cause

0:20:100:20:13

a few further delays, but it's just one of those unfortunate things.

0:20:130:20:18

The specialist recovery team get started,

0:20:190:20:22

raising the lorry with inflating cushions and onto wooden blocks.

0:20:220:20:26

They can then secure the winch underneath, ready to pull.

0:20:300:20:34

-Is it getting ready now, is it?

-I would think so.

0:20:340:20:36

It's time for Scott to step out into the traffic to shut the road.

0:20:360:20:40

Reporting Alpha Charlie Echo 41.

0:20:420:20:44

That's the traffic stopped by hand. Over.

0:20:440:20:46

Now, mate, you shouldn't be stopped too long.

0:20:490:20:52

We're just going to re-right it. As soon as it's back up on its wheels,

0:20:520:20:55

-there's no debris in lane two, I'll let you go, mate.

-All right.

0:20:550:20:58

But as the recovery truck starts to pull the lorry

0:21:000:21:02

slowly onto its wheels, there's a problem.

0:21:020:21:05

As they're starting to winch the truck over,

0:21:080:21:11

because all the cargo's lying against the side of the wagon,

0:21:110:21:14

the side's starting to split out of it, so what their concern is,

0:21:140:21:18

if they get it so far, and it suddenly bursts,

0:21:180:21:21

we're going to have milk burst all over the carriageway.

0:21:210:21:24

The consequences would be disastrous,

0:21:270:21:29

so the team have no choice but to stop.

0:21:290:21:32

The lorry's sides simply aren't designed to bear

0:21:350:21:37

the three-tonne weight of the load and so they need to secure them

0:21:370:21:41

with heavy-duty straps before they can continue.

0:21:410:21:44

But with the road closed, and traffic building,

0:21:460:21:49

they need to work quickly.

0:21:490:21:51

Closing the road is a huge decision for traffic officers

0:21:560:22:00

and it can happen because of breakdowns, rather than accidents.

0:22:000:22:04

Further south on the A1 in Doncaster,

0:22:060:22:09

it's a chilly Friday morning.

0:22:090:22:11

RAC patrol Noel Bonner has just started his shift.

0:22:120:22:17

The roads can be a little bit busier on Fridays.

0:22:170:22:20

It can cause a little bit of traffic.

0:22:200:22:22

This stretch of the A1 - there's very little hard shoulder,

0:22:230:22:27

so it makes it quite dangerous when people break down.

0:22:270:22:29

Within a few minutes of joining the road,

0:22:300:22:33

Noel receives his first call-out of the day.

0:22:330:22:36

We've just got a job on the Doncaster bypass, so the A1M.

0:22:360:22:39

We've got a vehicle that's got a puncture.

0:22:390:22:41

It's got a blowout and it's got no spare with it,

0:22:410:22:44

so we're going to go and see what we can sort out with that.

0:22:440:22:47

Beacons on, indicator on, to say we're pulling up.

0:22:520:22:55

It looks like a family outing.

0:22:550:22:57

59-year-old grandmother Janet

0:23:010:23:03

was driving alone when her tyre blew out.

0:23:030:23:06

Hiya. Who's Janet? Hi, Janet. Right.

0:23:060:23:09

We'll get something sorted for you and get you on your way.

0:23:090:23:13

Well, I was driving from my house to my daughter's

0:23:130:23:15

and then I heard a noise, pulled over and found my tyre out.

0:23:150:23:19

I phoned my daughter up and she's come out with friends to my rescue.

0:23:190:23:24

It didn't make a big bang, it was just making like a rumbling noise,

0:23:240:23:28

so I pulled over, climbed across the passenger seat,

0:23:280:23:31

and got out this way and that's when I saw it.

0:23:310:23:34

It's been really scary.

0:23:350:23:37

Shocked me. It has shocked me.

0:23:380:23:40

With no spare wheel in Janet's car, Noel has to use a special one

0:23:420:23:46

he carries that fits most makes of vehicles.

0:23:460:23:48

Wheel's going to be fine. It's just where it's shredded,

0:23:480:23:51

just makes it more difficult to pull them off. That's all.

0:23:510:23:54

He's doing really well. Yeah. Class service. Brilliant.

0:23:540:24:00

He's definitely my hero.

0:24:000:24:02

Noel knows the hard shoulder is no place to gather your family...

0:24:020:24:06

..because on average around 50 people are killed

0:24:070:24:10

or seriously injured in accidents at the roadside every year.

0:24:100:24:13

You don't realise how fast the vehicles are going

0:24:130:24:16

while you're stood here.

0:24:160:24:17

-They are going at some speed.

-Yeah.

0:24:180:24:21

This is what scared me. I didn't like being out here on my own.

0:24:220:24:26

-Yeah.

-Because you don't know.

0:24:260:24:28

I mean, one car were indicating and I thought,

0:24:280:24:30

"He's going to indicate and come into the back of me."

0:24:300:24:33

Within just 25 minutes, Noel has got Janet's car ready to rejoin the A1.

0:24:350:24:41

-She'll laugh about it tonight when she's in bed.

-Yeah.

0:24:410:24:44

-When I'm nice and warm in bed.

-Yeah.

0:24:440:24:46

-Get me electric blanket on.

-Yes.

0:24:480:24:50

Keep on the hard shoulder because you're within 200 yards.

0:24:520:24:55

Just take your time and then just watch out for any traffic

0:24:550:24:58

that's coming off to then merge into it.

0:24:580:25:00

Noel has got Janet safely away from a dangerous situation.

0:25:010:25:05

The majority of the time we're helping people

0:25:050:25:07

on the A1 who are happy to see you.

0:25:070:25:09

They're happy that they're going to get something sorted.

0:25:090:25:12

Along with the road noise and the wind and the chill factor,

0:25:120:25:16

it does make it a scary place to be.

0:25:160:25:19

Noel and his colleagues deal with around 3,500 breakdowns on the A1

0:25:260:25:30

every year and around 30 miles south in Nottinghamshire is another group

0:25:300:25:35

who are desperate not to end up stranded by the roadside.

0:25:350:25:38

Olympic hopeful Pippa Allen and fellow showjumper Sally

0:25:420:25:45

are on their way to the London International Horse Show

0:25:450:25:48

with Pippa's boyfriend Stevie at the wheel.

0:25:480:25:50

For everyone going to Olympia, it's like everyone's got a very good

0:25:530:25:56

chance of doing well there, so it depends how it goes on the day.

0:25:560:26:02

And as well as worrying about her own performance,

0:26:030:26:06

Pippa will also be looking out for her little sister Millie.

0:26:060:26:09

She's very competitive. I get really nervous when she's in the ring.

0:26:090:26:16

I really want her to do well,

0:26:160:26:18

but hopefully we both do well and it works out.

0:26:180:26:21

An hour after leaving home,

0:26:220:26:24

the horses appear happy and relaxed on Stevie's onboard camera,

0:26:240:26:29

but they're about to get a new equine companion who's not as keen

0:26:290:26:33

on the A1 road trip as they are.

0:26:330:26:35

Stevie's turning off the A1 at Newark to collect Kantho,

0:26:380:26:41

a jittery gelding also heading for the competition.

0:26:410:26:44

And Kantho has already decided he's not keen on this luxury transport.

0:26:500:26:54

Luckily, this horse can be led to hay, if not to water.

0:26:580:27:02

He's on.

0:27:040:27:06

With Kantho safely onboard,

0:27:060:27:08

Stevie and the girls can get back on the road.

0:27:080:27:11

It's a steady trot for the next leg of the journey and by five o'clock,

0:27:190:27:23

they're about to hit the capital, just in time for rush hour.

0:27:230:27:27

Just getting to central London now.

0:27:270:27:30

It's quite busy and the roads are quite tight around here,

0:27:300:27:32

so just got to keep concentrating, keep an eye out for other cars.

0:27:320:27:37

Weaving this 20-foot lorry through central London is

0:27:390:27:42

no mean feat, but finally the bright lights of Olympia come into view.

0:27:420:27:47

After a five-and-a half hour journey,

0:27:500:27:52

it's a welcome sight for everyone, including the horses.

0:27:520:27:56

Pippa is keen to check Hope Springs is OK.

0:27:590:28:02

He's travelled really well. He's fine.

0:28:030:28:06

He seems quite excited to be here, so it's always a good sign.

0:28:060:28:10

And Hope Springs is not the only one picking up on the atmosphere.

0:28:120:28:16

I'm excited about tomorrow, also a little bit nervous.

0:28:180:28:21

I think everyone is, just really want to do well.

0:28:210:28:24

It's been a long time preparing for it,

0:28:240:28:26

be nice to finish the year on a win.

0:28:260:28:28

He'll bed down here for the night, ready for his big day tomorrow.

0:28:300:28:34

The next morning, it's competition time and Olympia is buzzing.

0:28:450:28:50

As the press and spectators begin to arrive,

0:28:540:28:57

Pippa takes Hope Springs for a warm-up around the course.

0:28:570:29:00

It's a chance to finally stretch his legs

0:29:010:29:03

after his 200 mile trip on the A1.

0:29:030:29:06

There's really big seating around and lots of crowd,

0:29:080:29:11

and it's quite a tight arena with a big atmosphere,

0:29:110:29:15

so sometimes the horses can get a bit nervous about that.

0:29:150:29:18

Luckily, Hope Springs takes it all in his stride.

0:29:190:29:23

Yeah, he felt really good. Very good.

0:29:230:29:25

-HORSE NICKERS

-Should be ready for later now.

0:29:270:29:30

But as their big moment approaches, Pippa's feeling the pressure.

0:29:330:29:37

It's a big competition, and we've,

0:29:390:29:41

we've kind of prepared all year really to get here.

0:29:410:29:46

So very excited and nervous all at the same time.

0:29:460:29:48

It all hangs on the next few hours,

0:29:500:29:52

and how the pair perform in the ring.

0:29:520:29:55

Tension is in the air too, back on the A1.

0:30:000:30:03

270 miles north of the capital near Durham,

0:30:030:30:06

traffic officers are still dealing with an overturned truck

0:30:060:30:10

that's carrying 3,000 litres of milk.

0:30:100:30:12

Concerned that the pressure of the load could cause the sides

0:30:150:30:18

of the lorry to burst any second,

0:30:180:30:20

the recovery team have been forced to stop the winch.

0:30:200:30:23

Scott has no choice but to reopen the outside lane

0:30:250:30:28

while they try and secure the sides to prevent a major spill.

0:30:280:30:32

Our aim is to keep traffic moving, that's why we're here.

0:30:360:30:39

So instead of having it all stopped while they put more straps round it,

0:30:390:30:42

it's safe enough to keep things moving in lane two.

0:30:420:30:45

Then when they're ready, I'll stop it again by hand and then

0:30:450:30:48

we'll go and try and re-right it again.

0:30:480:30:51

It's now 11am.

0:30:510:30:53

Peter and Scott have been at the scene for three-and-a-half hours.

0:30:530:30:57

There are massive tailbacks,

0:30:590:31:00

but this is one job the recovery team can't rush.

0:31:000:31:03

Soon, the heavy-duty straps are in place, and they're ready to go.

0:31:040:31:09

So once again, Scott needs to stop the traffic.

0:31:090:31:12

Charlie Echo 4-1.

0:31:120:31:13

We've just temporarily hand-stopped traffic while they reposition

0:31:130:31:16

this LGV, over.

0:31:160:31:19

A mechanical winch begins to lift the truck.

0:31:220:31:25

While a second cable on the other side ensures the lorry,

0:31:270:31:30

and its precarious cargo, is lowered very gently.

0:31:300:31:33

They've managed to get the wagon back on its wheels.

0:31:400:31:42

Luckily the big extra strap they put round

0:31:420:31:45

prevented the side from bursting over.

0:31:450:31:47

Some milk is still leaking.

0:31:470:31:50

But thankfully, it's only minor, and the team are able to shovel it away.

0:31:500:31:55

Now the priority is to get the traffic moving.

0:31:590:32:02

As the milk lorry is towed away,

0:32:030:32:05

Scott and Peter remove the cones

0:32:050:32:07

and traffic is released into the inside lane.

0:32:070:32:10

Alpha, Charlie Echo 4-1.

0:32:100:32:13

That's the lane one closure now removed,

0:32:130:32:15

you can reset your signs, over.

0:32:150:32:17

Finally, after more than four hours, Peter and Scott can be on their way.

0:32:210:32:25

And the major spill they feared has been averted.

0:32:260:32:29

If it had gone, it would have caused a lot of problems.

0:32:340:32:37

It's one of the worst things you can spill, isn't it, milk?

0:32:370:32:40

Why, there's no point crying over spilt milk, is there?

0:32:400:32:44

That's true. So they say.

0:32:440:32:45

Thankfully, overturned milk lorries

0:32:540:32:56

aren't an everyday occurrence on the A1.

0:32:560:32:59

But sadly, speeding motorists are.

0:32:590:33:01

Going too fast is one of the main factors

0:33:050:33:07

in fatal accidents on Britain's roads.

0:33:070:33:10

And it's estimated that on 70mph dual carriageways,

0:33:140:33:16

over a third of drivers still exceed the speed limit.

0:33:160:33:20

It's a constant problem for the A1 police patrols,

0:33:230:33:25

especially in roadworks

0:33:250:33:27

when speed restrictions are in place to protect workers.

0:33:270:33:31

CAMERA BEEPS

0:33:330:33:35

61.

0:33:350:33:37

67.

0:33:400:33:42

That's absolutely outrageous, 67mph in a 40.

0:33:420:33:45

On the A1 near Newcastle,

0:33:480:33:50

PC Alan Keenleyside is on the lookout for speeding drivers...

0:33:500:33:53

..in a 50 mile an hour stretch of roadworks near Dunston.

0:33:550:33:59

So, I've got colleagues of mine from our partner agencies,

0:34:030:34:06

from Highways England, from construction firms,

0:34:060:34:10

actually working on the road surface of the A1 northbound tonight.

0:34:100:34:14

And clearly the dangers of speeding on the roads,

0:34:140:34:19

you know, cars...

0:34:190:34:21

..they're dangerous things, they're weapons,

0:34:220:34:24

to all intents and purposes.

0:34:240:34:26

This exact stretch of road here last year saw

0:34:260:34:30

a fatal road traffic collision at high speed.

0:34:300:34:33

One vehicle lost control,

0:34:350:34:37

overturned and the driver of that vehicle was killed.

0:34:370:34:39

It's Friday night, the most common day of the week to have an accident.

0:34:430:34:47

And Alan doesn't want speeders taking any chances

0:34:470:34:50

with the lives of the workforce on the road.

0:34:500:34:52

And it's not long before he spots a clear offender.

0:34:560:34:59

His onboard camera shows the car in front in the outside lane

0:35:020:35:06

travelling well over 80mph.

0:35:060:35:07

Using a detection device, he's able to record the car's average speed.

0:35:130:35:18

88 miles an hour in a 50.

0:35:180:35:21

And the driver's not done yet.

0:35:230:35:25

And he's getting quicker.

0:35:270:35:28

Alan has to get up to more than 90mph to catch up.

0:35:290:35:34

Flash the blue lights.

0:35:340:35:35

It's time to pull this driver over.

0:35:370:35:39

We've got roadworks on with a full road closure

0:35:410:35:44

and I've got the driver at 88mph,

0:35:440:35:46

so we'll be stopping this driver and having a word.

0:35:460:35:49

I think this is a driver that potentially knows

0:35:520:35:54

he's possibly in a spot of bother.

0:35:540:35:56

Hello, how are you? Do you know why I've stopped you this evening?

0:36:010:36:04

What sort of speed do you think you were doing

0:36:040:36:06

when I put the blue lights on to alert you?

0:36:060:36:08

-Um, 70, 80?

-70, 80? OK. And the speed limit is?

0:36:080:36:11

-50.

-50.

0:36:110:36:14

I've got it recorded at 88mph. OK?

0:36:140:36:17

The average stopping distance for a car doing 80mph

0:36:170:36:21

is over 130 metres.

0:36:210:36:23

The equivalent of 29 car lengths.

0:36:230:36:26

Jump in the back seat over there.

0:36:260:36:27

A collision with road workers or their equipment

0:36:270:36:30

would almost certainly have resulted in fatalities.

0:36:300:36:33

So, it took you 14.705 seconds, all right?

0:36:330:36:39

To cover a distance of 0.3604 miles.

0:36:390:36:44

So that equates to your average speed being

0:36:440:36:46

88 miles an hour in a 50.

0:36:460:36:49

Certainly way over the top, isn't it? Any reason why?

0:36:490:36:52

Appreciate you're on your way home from work, all right?

0:36:550:36:58

But there's actually guys on this bit of the road here

0:36:580:37:01

who are at work on the A1.

0:37:010:37:02

And you're barrelling into their roadworks doing 88mph.

0:37:020:37:05

Seriously not cool.

0:37:050:37:07

The driver is immediately facing penalty points and a fine.

0:37:080:37:12

You do not have to say anything but it may harm your defence

0:37:120:37:15

if you don't mention now something you later rely on in court.

0:37:150:37:17

Anything you do say may be given in evidence.

0:37:170:37:19

I don't usually speed, I usually stick to the speed limit.

0:37:220:37:25

Just a bit eager to get home today.

0:37:260:37:28

Probably lucky I'm not losing my licence.

0:37:280:37:31

For Alan, this has been a typical Friday night job.

0:37:390:37:42

People have had a pretty rubbish week at work

0:37:420:37:44

and they just want to get home to the wife and kids.

0:37:440:37:47

But do you know what, it doesn't matter how bad your week's been,

0:37:470:37:49

don't bring that frustration, that tiredness, onto the A1.

0:37:490:37:52

Because people get hurt on the A1

0:37:520:37:54

and that's the last thing anybody wants.

0:37:540:37:56

Alan's shift is drawing to a close.

0:38:020:38:05

But 280 miles away in Kensington Olympia,

0:38:050:38:08

it's the start of a big day for showjumper Pippa Allen.

0:38:080:38:12

At the London International Horse Show,

0:38:180:38:20

it's crunch time for the Olympic hopeful.

0:38:200:38:23

Combi's quite tricky after that corner, isn't it?

0:38:280:38:30

There's just time for one last walk of the course

0:38:310:38:34

before the competition begins.

0:38:340:38:36

Looks all right, it looks nice, it's technical enough,

0:38:380:38:41

everything comes quite quick off the corners,

0:38:410:38:44

you're going to have to keep thinking, try and keep it smooth.

0:38:440:38:47

But apart from that it seems fine.

0:38:470:38:48

Today's the culmination of a whole year's training.

0:38:500:38:53

Even if you're having a fantastic round,

0:38:530:38:55

you can have one down or even a couple of mistakes,

0:38:550:38:58

anything can happen in there, really.

0:38:580:39:00

It's just about being lucky on the day.

0:39:000:39:02

People will be competing against the country's top young showjumpers,

0:39:040:39:08

including her younger sister, Millie.

0:39:080:39:10

We went to Liverpool last year,

0:39:100:39:12

it was very close, there was 0.02 of a second between us.

0:39:120:39:16

Pippa was on the winning side of it,

0:39:160:39:18

so maybe if it did get to that point this year, I'm definitely

0:39:180:39:21

going to try and go that little bit faster to be on the winning side.

0:39:210:39:25

We definitely have a strong rivalry,

0:39:250:39:28

but, you know, I always want her to do well as well.

0:39:280:39:31

Maybe just not quite as good as me!

0:39:310:39:33

Today, Millie gets to set the pace as she's first in the ring,

0:39:350:39:39

while Pippa watches anxiously from the side.

0:39:390:39:42

She's knocked down a fence,

0:39:500:39:51

but she could still get through to the second round.

0:39:510:39:54

The top 10 riders come back in the second round, into the jump-off.

0:39:570:40:01

So hopefully she might get back in if her time was fast enough.

0:40:010:40:05

Next up, it's Pippa's friend Sally.

0:40:050:40:08

But she gets off to a bad start. And with a slow time, she's knocked out.

0:40:110:40:15

Pippa and Hope Springs are up next.

0:40:200:40:22

And boyfriend Stevie is on tenterhooks.

0:40:220:40:26

BELL RINGS

0:40:260:40:27

A pole down means four faults.

0:40:360:40:38

To get through to the next round,

0:40:380:40:40

Pippa knows it's now all about speed.

0:40:400:40:43

But as the faults mount...

0:40:530:40:55

Pippa's hopes are shattered.

0:40:550:40:58

-PA:

-'Four down, 16 points for Pippa Allen and Hope Springs.'

0:41:020:41:05

It's a massive disappointment.

0:41:060:41:08

She had a couple down, she had an early fence and then she was

0:41:080:41:11

trying to get into the top 10, make the jump-off,

0:41:110:41:13

so trying to be bit quicker and then she had a couple more. So...

0:41:130:41:17

Couldn't have gotten much worse.

0:41:190:41:20

It was pretty terrible.

0:41:220:41:24

Gutted, really, because I thought I had a good chance,

0:41:270:41:29

he felt like he was going well.

0:41:290:41:31

It just didn't work out on the day,

0:41:310:41:33

but it's kind of what happens in showjumping.

0:41:330:41:35

Sometimes it's great, and sometimes it's very upsetting.

0:41:350:41:40

It's all over for Pippa.

0:41:430:41:45

But sister Millie still has a chance,

0:41:480:41:51

as she's through to the jump-off.

0:41:510:41:53

It's a clear round with a fast time.

0:42:010:42:05

Well done, little bubby.

0:42:050:42:06

And a good result and consolation for Pippa.

0:42:080:42:11

Millie's just come fifth in that class,

0:42:110:42:13

she had one down in the first round then she did a really good jump-off.

0:42:130:42:16

She was fast and she did really well.

0:42:160:42:19

Yeah, I'm really pleased with Balou,

0:42:190:42:21

he jumped his socks off and I couldn't ask for a better horse.

0:42:210:42:24

The day's left Pippa with mixed emotions,

0:42:260:42:29

but as the saying goes, hope springs eternal.

0:42:290:42:33

And as the pair prepare to head home, there's always next year.

0:42:350:42:39

The American tourist who was injured in the head-on collision

0:42:440:42:48

spent more than three weeks in hospital

0:42:480:42:50

before returning home to the States to continue his recovery.

0:42:500:42:53

And just a month later, Pippa and Hope Springs returned to

0:42:550:42:58

winning form with a showjumping first place at Aintree.

0:42:580:43:02

Next time, a horrific crash...

0:43:040:43:06

..with devastating consequences.

0:43:070:43:09

The rear end of that vehicle is unrecognisable.

0:43:090:43:12

The race to rescue drivers...

0:43:130:43:15

HE WHISTLES

0:43:150:43:16

..caught in a four car collision.

0:43:160:43:18

1-3, all vehicles cleared of the lane two now.

0:43:180:43:21

And the lorries putting lives at risk.

0:43:210:43:24

This is a fuel tank and somebody's just put a plastic bag in.

0:43:240:43:28

Police race to the scene of a head-on collision, an overturned milk lorry causes rush hour chaos, and a reckless speeder is tracked down after putting roadworkers' lives at risk.