It was the scene of a miracle as a major vehicle pile-up, involving about 103 vehicles resulted with no death recorded. The pile-ups ended in many serious injuries as cars engaged in hard-hitting collisions in one of UK’s major busy roads as fogs took over the road, deeming the vision of drivers.
At least sixty people were injured as more than 130 vehicles were involved in a long trail of road accident on the Sheppey crossing in Kent in the outskirt of London.
The accidents occurred following the sudden appearance of a thick fog which caught many motorists unaware.
At least eight of those who sustained injuries in the multi-collision pile-ups needed major treatment.
Ambulance crews said 35 casualties needed hospital treatment in what were described as “horrendous scenes” as the A249 bridge was closed for more than nine hours and only reopened to traffic late in the evening.
Sources claimed visibility had been very poor at the time of the crash but drivers were approaching the crossing with no lights and banging in quick succession resulting in various injuries.
South East Coast Ambulance Service (Secamb) said a further 200 people were either treated for minor injuries or given advice should symptoms develop later.
Firefighters had to free five people from their vehicles on the southbound carriageway.
The injured people were taken to six different hospitals in Medway, Ashford, Margate, Maidstone, Canterbury and London.
Medway Maritime Hospital declared a major incident and cancelled all its routine planned surgery, to help deal with the incident.
Service returned to normal at the hospital at about 14:00 BST
Secamb said the first ambulances left the crash scene at 08:50 BST because much of the triage and early treatment was carried out at the scene.
Patients started arriving in hospitals shortly after with Medway admitting its first casualty at 09:45
A spokesman for the Highways Agency said: “It is far too early to speculate on the cause of today’s incident which is still under investigation by police.”
He confirmed a safety audit was carried out on the crossing a year after its completion.
“This audit concluded that accidents on the A249 had decreased since the completion of the scheme and that the accident rate was below the national average for that type of road,” he said.
The £100m four-lane crossing, which connects the Isle of Sheppey with mainland Kent, opened in 2006 and is 0.75 miles (1.25km) long and rises to 115ft (35m) at its highest point.
Crash witnesses and people with concerns about relatives who may have been involved can contact Kent Police on 01622 653580.