Police leave motorcyclist in a ditch following confusion over county borders

An injured motorcyclist was left in a ditch for over two-and-a-half hours last Sunday (Sept 20) when Police failed to attend an accident due to county border confusion. The biker crashed near Tilbrook in Cambridgeshire that borders Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire.

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After swerving to avoid a car on the B645 on Sunday while out riding with friends, 49 year old Richard Collins found himself in a ditch with a broken wrist.

Police forces from the three counties were notified of the accident on the B645 yet all failed to respond to the accident over confusion of which force should attend. Emergency services were initially contacted shortly after 16:00 on Sunday but did not arrive to the scene of the accident until 18:40. Bedfordshire Police were told of the crash at 16:25 by Northamptonshire Police but replied that the accident was not on its patch.

After an hour and fifteen minutes, Bedfordshire Police were notified that no emergency services had attended and immediately dispatched a police car which wouldn’t get to the scene until 18:40 after having difficulty finding the casualty. The motorcyclist was then taken to Bedford Hospital with arm injuries in the Police car as no ambulance had attended the accident.

The three counties have all apologised to the rider involved.

Cambridgeshire Police have confirmed that the incident took place in Bedfordshire and have commented; “it remains clear that a better response should have been given by all three forces." 

They further stated: “We will now work with Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire to find out what went wrong and ensure this is not repeated.”

Northamptonshire Police commented; “it is vital that emergency services work effectively together to provide a suitable response to incidents regardless of where they happen. We will work with our colleagues in Cambridgeshire Police, Bedfordshire Police and the ambulance service to establish the full circumstances of this incident, and learn the lessons to prevent similar incidents in the future.”

Source: BBC

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James Archibald

By James Archibald

Former MCN Junior Web Producer