Woman, 21, died in car crash on 'notorious' Yorkshire road after losing control

A 21-year-old woman died in a car crash in Yorkshire after she hit a patch of water on a “notorious” stretch of road and lost control, an inquest heard.

Sasha-Raven Marie Brown’s vehicle collided head on with another car on the A6068 Colne Road in Craven, shortly after 12.30pm on January 19 last year.

Jackie Brown told an inquest in Northallerton today that her daughter had a “wicked sense of humour” and she was “looking towards the future and taking each day as it came in her free-spirited way”.

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The healthcare assistant, who worked at Airedale General Hospital, crashed when she was driving to a supermarket in Keighley, where her boyfriend worked, to do some shopping.

Sasha-Raven BrownSasha-Raven Brown
Sasha-Raven Brown

Witnesses said her blue Kia Picanto rounded a bend and then aquaplaned when it hit water that was running off surrounding fields and across the road, following a period of heavy rain and snow.

Andrew Beaumont, who was in the other vehicle involved in the crash, said: “(She) obviously lost some control and the car was coming down snaking towards me.

“Just as it sort of got outside my peripheral vision, the next thing I remember was just a big blue bonnet coming into my headlight, on the right hand side

“The next thing I remember is a huge bang.”

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He added: “The only thought I had was that it didn't seem to slow down, but I think she was fighting for control of the steering, which is understandable.”

Ms Brown was pronounced dead at the scene and a report on the post mortem examination stated the cause of death was multiple injuries caused by a collision.

The healthcare assistant from Haworth, who passed her driving test nine months before the crash, had been wearing a seatbelt and no alcohol was found in her system.

Mr Beaumont got out of his car and was helped by an off-duty paramedic at the scene, before he was taken to hospital. He suffered a concussion, whiplash, several broken ribs and a bruised bowel.

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Benjamin Yates, a police constable who stopped to help while driving home from work, said that stretch of road can become “quite dangerous” after periods of heavy rain or snow.

“During bad weather, water coming off the surrounding hills and fields causes flooding at times and I know multiple vehicles have been involved in collisions at this point previously,” he added.

Assistant coroner John Broadbridge said the evidence shows Ms Brown has been travelling at atleast 40mph when she hit the water and lost control.

He added: “I have to say that there was probably nothing Mr Beaumont could have done to avoid the collision.”

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The coroner recorded a verdict of death by road traffic collision, but said he would also write a Prevention of Future Death report which calls for North Yorkshire County Council to review that stretch of road.

“This roadway appears to be, and these are my words, notorious for excess water on the road surface,” he said.

“The engineering of the roadway needs to change to cope with this flow of water that people have identified.

“It has been the main cause of this incident, together with Miss Brown's inexperience and speed.”

Paying tribute to her daughter, Mrs Brown added: "

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Following the inquest, Sasha-Raven’s mother said: "I would like to say how shocked and devastated I am for the loss of Sasha-Raven and her life ending so tragically when it had only just started.

“It has been an extremely difficult year since the accident, coming to terms with the actual reality of losing a loving daughter so unexpectedly.

“I would like to thank everyone who stopped at the accident site and stayed with my daughter until the emergency services arrived. I would also like to thank the emergency services for everything they did on that day also.”