Video: Young mum knocked out in smash at Ardboe ‘accident blackspot’

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An Ardboe woman is calling on TransportNI to fix an “accident blackspot” near her home after her daughter was “knocked out” in a car crash.

“I just think somebody is going to be killed before they do anything,” former Cookstown councillor Deirdre Mayo told the Mail.

Young mum Nicola Mayo was hit as she edged out on to Ballynafeagh Road

Young mum Nicola Mayo was hit as she edged out on to Ballynafeagh Road

She said her 23-year-old daughter Nicola - mum to two young children - is lucky to be alive after an oncoming car hit hers at 60mph as she edged on to the Ballynafeagh Road, at the Carnan junction.

And she was not the first member of the Mayo family to have been involved in a traffic collision at the spot - as Deirdre herself was in an accident at the same junction in March.

Mrs Mayo explained how it is impossible to see traffic coming from the right at the T-junction because the road curves behind an old farm shed. And the mirror that was installed by TransportNI so drivers can see around the corner is fogged over.

Mrs Mayo described how her daughter was catapulted across the road during the incident, whilst the car that hit her ended up in the hedge.

I just think somebody is going to be killed before they do anything - Former SDLP councillor Deirdre Mayo

It’s understood a young man in the other car hurt his arm, while her daughter was knocked out and concussed.

“The impact was so great that she was knocked unconscious,” Mrs Mayo said.

“Two boys got out of the [other] car to come and see if she was alright and it scared the wits out of them because they thought she was dead.

“The police said they weren’t going any faster than 60mph. They weren’t breaking any laws and that’s the speed limit on that road.

The cars involved in the smash at the Carnan junction

The cars involved in the smash at the Carnan junction

“That’s ok if you can see the cars coming,” she added.

Because Nicola was the one pulling out she is also being held responsible.

Mrs Mayo said she would understand that in normal circumstances, but since this corner has been “plagued by many accidents over the years” and by a TransportNI worker’s own admission is “a very awkward junction to use” - she doesn’t think Nicola should be blamed.

“They’re holding her responsible because she pulled out of a side road - which I understand them saying.

The fogged over TranportNI mirror there to help drivers see round the dangerous bend

The fogged over TranportNI mirror there to help drivers see round the dangerous bend

“But it’s not as clear cut as that,” she went on, “you have to come out so far to be able to see what’s coming - you can’t see past that shed.

“If it was a straight road you might have a chance, but because of the curve of the road you can’t see. We all come out very tentatively at that road end - you have no other choice.

“I want Road Service to do something about it,” Deirdre added.

“Either they reduce the speed on this part of the road or they need to put more warning signs down there to alert people that we’re coming out. I don’t know if they can change where we come out.”

A spokesperson for TransportNI said: “TransportNI will investigate this matter to see if any safety measures are necessary.”