Belfast Telegraph

Baby 'hit by runaway horsebox'

A mother and baby have been hit by a runaway horsebox in Co Down.

The infant was being carried in a car seat as the woman headed to the dentist in Downpatrick. She was walking away from the broken down and empty transporter as it rolled down a steep hill, witnesses said.

The lorry hit the dentist's and a bar. The child was cared for by staff from the dentist's office before her transfer to hospital while her mother was freed from under the vehicle a short time later.

They were taken to the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast where their conditions were stable, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Paul Symington, editor at the Down Recorder newspaper which has offices yards from the scene of the accident, explained: "The lorry had broken down at the top of Irish Street. The police were directing traffic around it while people worked on it and suddenly it took off and went straight down the road."

It ran for about 100 yards, crossing the junction with Market Street, mounting the footpath and narrowly missing a pedestrian, Mr Symington added. "The mother, who was carrying her child in a car seat with a handle, was walking away from it - she did not see it at all, it just clobbered her."

She was trapped under the vehicle but was not crushed and was believed to have been fully conscious and breathing. Emergency services attended.

Her baby was taken into the dental surgery by staff then on to hospital by ambulance.

Mr Symington said the emergency services dealt with the incident, close to a police station in the centre of town, very quickly.

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