Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 26 November 2014

Driver's 999 to help cross bridge

Kent Police helped a man with a fear of bridges through the Dartford Crossing
Kent Police helped a man with a fear of bridges through the Dartford Crossing

A terrified motorist with a fear of bridges called police out for help - because he was too scared to drive through the Dartford Crossing, it has been revealed.

The driver took a wrong turn and called Kent Police when his satnav directed him to drive over the river crossing in north Kent at 9.30am on Monday.

It emerged that the man, who did not know the area, suffers from gephyrophobia, an anxiety disorder brought about through a fear of crossing bridges.

The force control room operator explained to the driver he would be passing through the tunnel, not over the bridge, but the motorist confessed he still felt too scared to cross.

The operator stayed on the phone with the man to reassure him until a patrol located his car - and drove the vehicle through the tunnel with him as a passenger, before sending him on his way.

Inspector Paul Sellwood, of the Kent Police roads policing unit, said: "This incident shows how seriously we take all calls we receive from members of the public.

"We always respond and we try to help to the best of our ability.

"Our role is maintaining order and safety on the roads, so if someone is concerned, trapped or scared, it is our job to attend and help and support from where-ever we can."

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