A young mum has spoken of the moment she and her baby daughter cheated death in a terrifying three-car smash on one of the region’s busiest roads.
The taxi in which Tyla Mackie, 19, and 11-month-old Isabella were travelling ended up on its roof after the accident on the westbound A690, at West Rainton, shortly before lunchtime on Thursday.
The pair were rushed to hospital along with the taxi driver, though none of the three was seriously hurt.
Tyla said she and Isabella had been travelling to Durham railway station when the accident occurred.
The full-time mum’s recollection of the smash is hazy: “All I remember is turning to my daughter and trying to get one of her bottles out of the bag,” she said.
“Then I heard a great big smash – I thought at first the taxi driver had braked really hard.
I heard a great big smash - I thought at first the taxi driver had braked really hard. It sent us flying straight forward towards the front of the taxi and I remember us rolling over and flying through the air before landing on the roof.Tyla Mackie
“It sent us flying straight forward towards the front of the taxi and I remember us rolling over and flying through the air before landing on the roof.”
Tyla has thanked the members of the public who rushed to her and her daughter’s aid.
“Isabella was in her car seat, she was securely strapped in,” she said.
“I was able to get out with the assistance of some passers-by. I wasn’t in the car for that long after the accident – about five minutes at most before they were able to get me out.”
Now Tyla is recovering at home in The Crescent, Shiney Row, with support from partner Kristopher Jordan.
“I am in a lot of pain, but my daughter came out of it without any injuries,” she said.
“I have got whiplash. I have got serious internal bruising on both of my legs, my hips and the lower part of my back, but luckily no broken bones.
“It could have been a lot worse.”
Tyla’s injuries have made it difficult for her to look after Isabella, but Kristopher has been able to help out.
“I am on crutches at the moment,” said Tyla. Luckily, my partner has been able to take some time off work to help.”
The North East Ambulance Service sent two ambulances to the crash scene and the road was closed for several hours, with diversions in place until the carriageway could be cleared.
A Durham Constabulary spokesman confirmed the accident was still under investigation, but said no one had so far been charged in connection with the incident.
A spokesman for Westbourne Taxis said the driver was still off work, but was recovering at home.