Man in surgery after gritter crash

AN investigation has been launched after a man was seriously hurt in a collision with a gritting lorry on an isolated stretch of road this morning.

AN investigation has been launched after a man was seriously hurt in a collision with a gritting lorry on an isolated stretch of road this morning.

The man is having surgery on his injuries this afternoon, but they are not thought to be life-threatening.

The crash caused massive tailbacks for rush hour traffic early this morning on the A1071 near Burstall.

It sparked a morning of misery on the roads as motorists battled against driving rain and sleet and Operation Stack was put in place at the Port of Felixstowe because of high winds.

A bus also broke down on a sliproad off the A14 at Copdock causing traffic jams at around 8.30am and Whatfield Road in Naughton near Stowmarket was closed after a power cable came down at around 8.30am.

In Southwold a road was blocked at 8am after an electricity post blew down across a street.

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It is believed that in the Burstall crash, the victim had been walking along the road at just after 6am when he was in collision with the lorry and suffered head injuries and fractures to his legs.

A spokeswoman for the East of England Ambulance Service said the man had been conscious and breathing at the scene and had been taken to Ipswich Hospital.

The driver of the Suffolk County Council vehicle was too shocked to speak this morning.

But his colleague, who was in the cab at the time, said it was a “nasty” accident.

The supervisor, who did not wish to be named, added: “He just appeared in the road. I hope he survives. We really can't say anything else about it.”

Ambulance and police were called to the scene where the man was lying in the road.

Police closed one lane of the A1071 from the roundabout with the B1113 and the junction with Burstall Lane.

Diversions caused gridlock chaos for commuters travelling into Ipswich.

Burstall Lane was completely clogged with tailbacks reaching two to three miles. The road was re-opened at around 8.45am.

The road where the pedestrian was walking is flanked by open fields and is not separated by barriers or hedgerows.

Visibility at this time of day would have been poor particularly in the absence of street lighting.

A woman who lives on a bend near the scene said the road was a notorious accident black spot.

The woman who lives next to Hintlesham Fishing Lakes said at least one motorist a year crashed through her fence after coming a cropper on the bend.

The woman, who did not want to be named, also said thousands of pounds had been spent improving that bend around two years ago.

A Suffolk County Council spokesman said they could not say whether the lorry was gritting at the time or whether it had its flashing lights on.

The spokesman would only say: “The gritter fleet across the county was out at 4.30am today re-treating priority one routes.

“We are aware of the crash and the police are investigating the matter.

Police are appealing for witnesses following the crash.

Emergency services were called at around 6.10am to Hurdle Makers Hill, Sproughton where a lorry had collided with a male pedestrian.

The man was taken to Ipswich Hospital suffering head and leg injuries believed to be life threatening.

Anyone who witnessed the incident should call Suffolk Police on 01473 613500.

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