No action will be taken over Prince Philip's car crash in Norfolk
PUBLISHED: 11:10 14 February 2019 | UPDATED: 15:30 14 February 2019
Prince Philip will face no further action over a car crash he was involved in last month.
The 97-year-old Royal’s Land Rover overturned when it was involved in a collision at Babingley, near Sandringham, on Thursday, January 17.
Prince Philip, who walked away from the crash unharmed, told passers-by who helped to pull him from the vehicle he had been blinded by the setting sun, as he turned out of the B1439 West Newton road onto the main A149 coast road between King’s Lynn and Hunstanton.
Two women in the other vehicle involved, a Kia, received minor injuries, while a baby in the back seat was unharmed.
Today Chris Long, chief crown prosecutor for CPS East of England, said: “The CPS has carefully reviewed material submitted by the police in relation to a traffic collision on the A149 on 17 January this year.
“We took into account all of the circumstances in this case, including the level of culpability, the age of the driver and the surrender of the driving licence.
“We have decided that it would not be in the public interest to prosecute.
“All those involved in the collision have been informed and provided with a full explanation.”
Buckingham Palace said the Duke voluntarily handed in his driving licence to police last weekend.
In a statement, the force said: Norfolk police can confirm that following receipt of Crown Prosecution Service charging advice, the police investigation into a collision on the A149 at Sandringham in January has now been completed.
“The incident happened on Thursday, January 17, shortly before 3pm when a Land Rover and a Kia were involved in a collision at the junction with the B1439.
“The 28-year-old driver of the Kia suffered cuts to her knee while the passenger, a 46-year-old woman, sustained a broken wrist and both required hospital treatment. A third passenger in the Kia, a nine-month-old baby boy, was uninjured.
“The driver of the Land Rover, a 97-year-old man, was uninjured.
“Both drivers were breath tested, as per force policy of anyone involved in a collision, and both provided negative readings.
“A collision investigation was launched and carried out by the roads policing team, which is standard procedure for crashes of this nature.
“As part of the investigation, written statements were provided by both drivers, along with witnesses and officers who attended the scene. Police also carried out an eyesight test with the driver of the Land Rover on Saturday, January 19, which he passed successfully. “The investigation file was passed to the Crown Prosecution Service for their consideration. The CPS has confirmed today that it would not be in the public interest to prosecute and no further action will be taken.”
The Duke earlier apologised to passenger Emma Fairweather, 46, who suffered a broken wrist and driver Ellie Townsend, 28, who suffered cuts to her knees.
In a letter to Ms Fairweather dated January 21, which is believed to have been hand delivered to her home in King’s Lynn, he said he wished her a “speedy recovery” and said he “failed to see the car coming”.
He added: “I would like you to know how very sorry I am for my part in the accident at the Babingley cross-roads.
“I have been across that crossing any number of times and I know very well the amount of traffic that uses that main road.
“It was a bright sunny day and at about three in the afternoon, the sun was low over The Wash.
“In other words, the sun was shining low over the main road. In normal conditions I would have no difficulty in seeing traffic coming from the Dersingham direction, but I can only imagine that I failed to see the car coming, and I am very contrite about the consequences.
“I was somewhat shaken after the accident, but I was greatly relieved that none of you were seriously injured.
“As a crowd was beginning to gather, I was advised to return to Sandringham House by a local police officer. I have since learned that you suffered a broken arm. I am deeply sorry about this injury.”