NEIGHBOURS have spoken of hearing a ‘massive bang’ as a car went into a speed camera.
The driver – in his 50s – was driving a blue Hyundai along Northern Parade, Hilsea, Portsmouth, on Saturday morning.
His car smashed into a central reservation and hit a speed camera, at 10.10am. Police say he had been travelling at 50mph.
Two crews from Cosham fire station cut the roof off the car in order to free him. There were no other passengers in the car.
Louise Stothard, 42, a motor insurance claims advisor, was in her living room in Northern Parade, when she heard the crash.
She said: ‘I was in the lounge when I heard a massive bang and thought the load from a lorry had come off.
‘I rushed to my bedroom to take a look and saw a car smashed up, and people trying to help the man inside.
‘There was debris everywhere and a man started sweeping it all away.’
IT worker Tricia Hagan, 34, of Northern Parade, said: ‘I heard a loud bang, and when I looked out my window I saw the accident.
‘I’ve never seen anything like that before – there was debris everywhere.’
Hampshire police closed the road in both directions until midday so the driver could be freed and the scene cleared.
The camera was removed, and a protective cone put in its place.
Cosham blue watch manager Mark Norton said that an off-duty nurse had got into the car to support the driver’s neck until help arrived.
Mr Norton said: ‘When we arrived a nurse was in the back of a vehicle supporting the driver’s neck and kept him still.
‘We needed to cut the roof off the car so that we could free him.
‘The nurse did well to support his neck and kept him stable to prevent spinal injuries.
‘She was a passer-by and her help was brilliant.’
South Central Ambulance Service sent one ambulance and an officer, and the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance was also scrambled.
The driver was taken to Southampton General Hospital by ambulance to be treated for serious injuries which are not thought to be life-threatening.