POLICE have formally identified the two female drivers who died when their cars collided in Shotton Colliery yesterday afternoon.
The collision, between a white Fiat 500 car and a yellow Citroen Xsara happened at 6.05pm on the Front Street in Shotton, around 350m west of its junction with Traynor Way.
The driver of the Fiat, who was confirmed dead at the scene was 18-year-old Rebecca Learoyd, from Shinwell Crescent in Thornley; the Citroen driver was Anne Peachey, aged 60, from Kell Crescent in Sherburn Hill who was confirmed dead on arrival at the James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough.
A 19-year-old female passenger in the Fiat, also from Thornley suffered serious injuries and remains in a critical condition in Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary.
Two passengers in the Citroen car, Mrs Peachey’s 33-year-old daughter Joanne and her 13-year-old granddaughter, Adele Harland have been detained in the James Cook Hospital where they are being treated for non-serious injuries.
Police believe the Fiat was travelling in the same direction as a third vehicle, a grey coloured MG ZR car. The driver of this car, a 22-year-old man from Wingate was unhurt but has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving. He remains in custody at Peterlee police station.
Both the Fiat 500 and the Xsara were extensively damaged, the Fiat to its nearside and the Xsara mainly to the front.
The investigating officer, Sgt Phil Grieve appealed for anyone who might have seen the vehicles prior to the collision to come forward.
“It is vital we establish where all three vehicles had been travelling from and the manner in which they were being driven. If anyone else saw them on the roads in that area in the minutes leading up the accident I would ask them to contact us as soon as possible,” he said.
Anyone with information should contact the collision investigation unit on 0191 375 2159.