Cheam crash was 'like The Italian Job'
A DRIVER had a lucky escape in Cheam yesterday (Tuesday) after she crashed her car straight through a wall and almost flipped backwards down a hill.
The woman was reversing her Mazda 3 in Station Way at about 4.35pm when she lost control and sped backwards.
She smashed straight through the brick wall outside The Railway pub, and the vehicle was left dangling over the eight-foot embankment.
The driver, who was said to be in her 30s, managed to climb safely out of the car without tipping it backwards down the steep hill.
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She was not hurt in the crash, and police confirmed she has not been arrested.
Station Way was closed briefly that evening as the Mazda was towed out.
"It was like The Italian Job, the way the car was left hanging over the edge," said Philip Dean, 48, from Wallington.
"Looking at the car now, it is amazing she walked out of it unhurt.
"Given the time of day, it's also fortunate there weren't any children on the way home from school."
Ronald Walker, 52, who saw the collision as he walked to Cheam station, described as a 'very close call'.
"A few inches further back or a few seconds longer before she braked, and she would have gone straight over," said Mr Walker, an engineer.
"I mean that literally, it was a very lucky escape that she had.
"You can see from the wheels how close it was, any further backwards and the car would have flipped over and gone straight down the embankment."
Rachel Dennis, an administrative assistant, was on her way to Sutton and saw the crash.
"I think the lady was trying to turn round in the road, there was a lot of traffic and maybe she panicked," said Miss Dennis, 29.
"The car just suddenly shot backwards and there was this huge bang.
"She said the car was an automatic, I don't think she'd had it very long."
Miss Dennis said the woman had been terrified.
"She was shaking when she got out, she kept looking down the hill and saying she had nearly gone over," Miss Dennis said.
"I just can't believe how lucky she was that it didn't tip backwards, she could have been very badly hurt."
For more pictures of the crash, click here