Police appeal over donkeys killed in collision at New Forest accident blackspot
POLICE have appealed for witnesses to a collision which killed three donkeys at an accident blackspot in the New Forest.
The single-vehicle incident on Roger Penny Way happened at about 7.10am on Saturday 12th December.
Officers said a white Mercedes van collided with a trio small donkeys close to the Fritham junction. All three animals died as a result of their injuries.
The deaths prompted a joint appeal for drivers to slow down by local groups including the Commoners Defence Association, the verderers, Forestry England and the national park authority.
Commoner Gilly Jones, of New Forest Roads Awareness and a Speed Watch volunteer, said: “There is a blanket 40mph speed limit with 30mph in the villages.
“However, a speed limit is the maximum speed vehicles should be travelling at and, it is not necessarily a safe speed.
“The loss of any animal impacts many people – the commoner who has lost their animal, the Agister and police who have to attend incidents, and the driver and witnesses.”
Hampshire police said initial enquiries into the incident had been conducted, and they are now turning to the public for help.
They are asking for any witnesses to come forward and any drivers who have useful dashcam footage.
Korine Bishop, Hampshire Constabulary rural policing inspector, said: “This was a tragic incident which resulted in the death of three New Forest donkeys.
“The driver of the vehicle was spoken to at the scene by officers – with police enquiries ongoing to determine the exact circumstances of the incident.
“Yet, tragic as this incident is, it is a timely reminder to the residents of, and those driving through, the New Forest to be aware of your surroundings.
“We are now beginning to see wetter roads and reduced visibility due to dark early mornings and fog across the New Forest.
“While there is a maximum speed limit of 40mph applied across the area, motorists are advised to adapt their speed to the current driving conditions.”
Hampshire Constabulary's rural policing team were carrying out speed enforcement on Roger Penny Way today (Tuesday)
Call 101, quoting 44200478908, or contact the Crimestoppers charity anonymously on 0800 555 111.