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A harrowing story - trapped in speeding car!

11.03.06, 12:37
Today's online telegraph
has the following headline story. My only comment is that I think its good
that something like this can happen, and there be no casualties and no
prosecutions. It's healthy that sometimes things can happen and there be no
guilty party.

That having been said, I think the Bavarians have some questions to answer...

[quote to end of post]:

The accelerator has jammed, the brakes have burned out and I'm trapped in my
BMW doing 130mph
By Nick Britten
(Filed: 11/03/2006)

A motorist was trapped in his car driving at almost 130mph for 60 miles after
the accelerator jammed.

Kevin Nicolle, 25, was unable to stop the automatic BMW going at top speed
after the malfunction on the A1.

Kevin Nicolle: 'I couldn't get the pedal off the floor'
His terrifying journey, which was followed by four police cars and a
helicopter, ended when he smashed the car into a roundabout, flipping it on
its roof.

Amazingly, the former lorry driver walked away from the accident uninjured.

"The whole thing was just a blur," he said. "I can't get it out of my head. I
was terrified, hysterical and crying.

"Every time I close my eyes I remember it.

"It's a miracle I didn't collide with another vehicle or cause a pile-up, but
I had a lot of close shaves with lorries and cars and swerved about trying to
avoid them."

Mr Nicolle was driving back from friends in Newcastle to his home in
Southsea, Hants, last Sunday, when the accelerator on his automatic BMW 318
jammed at Catterick, near junction 53 of the A1.

He then travelled 60 miles in 26 minutes, passing through three counties.

"I had been driving for quite a while when I realised the accelerator pedal
was stuck down," he said. "I had gone into the fast lane and I couldn't get
the pedal off the floor. I used my hands-free phone and tried the AA to ask
them what to do.

"At that point I wasn't panicking because I jammed my foot on the brake and
that was keeping the speed to a steady 70mph.

"I told the AA I couldn't slow down. I thought they might be able to give me
some advice but they told me to hang up straight away and phone the police. I
dialled 999 and spoke to a woman and by this time I was starting to panic
because the speed of the car had increased to 100mph."

Police alerted a helicopter and four traffic cars set off to try to catch him
as Mr Nicolle kept up a running commentary, all the time flashing his lights
and sounding his horn to warn other motorists.

"My brakes were burning out and starting to fail - that's when the speed
really started to build," he said. "I could see the speed building to 120mph
or 130mph. I remember starting to shake and freeze up. I was really panicking
and broke into tears. I couldn't help it because I thought I was definitely
going to die.

"I was trying to slip the car into neutral but because the car was over-
revving and red-lining I couldn't do it.

"I couldn't turn off the ignition because it would have disabled the power
steering and made it even more dangerous. I was even shouting at the other
drivers to get out of the way, I was getting hysterical. The traffic was
getting heavier and I had to take drastic measures.

"I overtook someone on the verge outside the fast lane and police told me to
get on to the hard shoulder. But I passed three or four slip roads and at one
point I nearly T-boned someone trying to get on from the slip road.

"The woman operator told me the police were about half a mile behind me but
they were finding it difficult to catch me.

"I told them to send an ambulance because I was going to die. I knew I was
going to die.

"Then I saw a sign saying it was 800 yards to a round-about. There was a
queue of cars and I swerved round them then I tried to go round the
roundabout itself.

"I didn't deliberately try to crash the car to stop myself. I remember saying
to the fireman, 'Don't cut my car, you'll damage it' but they were
saying, 'Don't worry about that mate, it's written off'. I'd buy another BMW
because, although there was a problem, it saved my life in that crash."

Mr Nicolle overturned the car at the Blyth roundabout near Worksop.
Nottinghamshire police confirmed his version of events.

A spokesman said: "Kevin was monitored doing in excess of 100mph and is lucky
to have walked away with minor injuries.

"He phoned 999 to say that his brakes weren't working and was terrified for
his life."

The racing green R-reg car, which Mr Nicolle had had for a year, has been
examined by police and he has been told he will not face prosecution.

A spokesman for BMW, which wants to examine the wrecked car, said: "We are
unaware of any issues of that nature with that particular model."
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