Towbar smashed windscreen and hit driver's head

A driver says he is lucky to be alive after a loose towbar smashed through his windscreen and hit him on the head. Jonathan Loates, 30, said if he hadn’t ducked “it would have taken his head off”. Mr Loates said he heard a “massive bang” before he was struck by the 3.5kg (7.7lb) piece of metal when travelling on the A619 on 9 January.

Nottinghamshire Police believe the towbar could have fallen off a long wheel base van or a scrap metal truck. Mr Loates, from Blyth in Nottinghamshire, was heading towards Worksop when he saw something in the road.

“I thought it was a bit of wood or some rubbish,” he said. “There was a massive bang… the next thing I remember was getting out with my head pouring with blood.”

He was helped by another driver who called an ambulance and waited until it arrived. Mr Loates, who works for a recruitment firm in Hucknall, was taken to Doncaster Royal Infirmary and later transferred to a specialist head injury unit in Rotherham. “I’m lucky it didn’t hit me straight in the head because it would have taken my head off,” he said.

“The scar is going to be visible for the rest of my life.”

PC Anthony Brice, who is leading the investigation, said the towbar could have been from a vehicle travelling ahead of Mr Loates or in the opposite carriageway. “He’s lucky to be alive. He moved his head a few inches to the side and that saved his life,” he said.

The officer urged anyone with towbars on their vehicle to ensure they were attached securely to prevent similar incidents.

The force has appealed for information or any footage of what happened.

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