A young family cheated death when a 3kg catseye smashed through their windscreen.
The terrifying freak incident occurred when Tania Trewhela and her three children were driving towards Aylesbury on the A418.
Miss Trewhela said one or all of them could easily have been killed and that a ‘guardian angel’ must have been watching over them.
A lorry travelling in the opposite direction flicked the weighty marker out of the tarmac, hurtling it towards the family’s car. When it came through the windscreen it passed inches away from eight year old Sophia Batten, who was in the passenger seat, scraping a hole in her jacket.
She said: “It was raining and I saw the lorry coming so I slowed down. The spray came up onto the screen and as that happened the catseye came straight through the window.
“I looked to my left and saw Sophia pushing stuff away from her face. It looked like she was on fire.
“The girls were all screaming and there was glass everywhere. I stopped the car and managed to get the next car to stop and help us.”
Miss Trewhela and her partner, Simon Batten, who live in Stewkley, said had the catseye hit one of the children it would have almost certainly killed them. Had it struck Miss Trewhela they could have been in a serious accident and all been injured or killed.
Such incidents are rare but fatal accidents have happened before. Famous DJ Kemistry, real name Kemi Olusanya, was killed when a catseye smashed through the windscreen of a car she was travelling in.
Mr Batten said: “After it happened I was just thinking all day that I nearly lost my family. There must have been somebody watching over them.”
Sophia suffered a small cut to her hand in the incident but Olivia, six, seven-month-old Charlotte and Miss Trewhela escaped unscathed. But Mr Batten says the New Year’s Eve incident has mentally scarred them all.
He said: “None of the girls will sit in the front seat of the car now. I took Tania to town the other day and she could not stop looking at the catseyes.”
The car Miss Trewhela was driving has been written off and the couple plan to claim for compensation from Bucks County Council, which is responsible for maintaining the roads.
Miss Trewhela said: “It shouldn’t have happened. It was obviously not properly secured in the ground.
“We were going up the road and a metal thing they have put in the road has nearly killed all of us.”
Mr Batten said he returned to the section of road, near the Wingrave crossroads, after the incident and found three spots where catseyes were missing.
Bucks County Council said the road is inspected monthly and 10 potholes were found at the last check.
The council said: “Cases of catseyes failing in this manner are extremely rare and very difficult to predict on visual inspections. We are, however, very pleased that no-one was injured in this incident.”
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Weather for Thame
Saturday 25 May 2013
Temperature: 4 C to 16 C
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Wind direction: North
Temperature: 5 C to 18 C
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