Road Victim Was Police Officer

A South Tyneside policeman has been named as the victim of a road crash in Co Durham at the weekend.

Pc Neil Gartland, of the Northumbria force, died on the A19 on Friday night when about 30 vehicles were involved in a number of separate collisions.

The 38-year-old, who lived in Sunderland, had worked in the South Tyneside area command for eight years.

The fatal collision was the first of three crashes in the foggy conditions.

Chief Supt Mark Dennett of Northumbria Police said: "Neil was an outstanding officer, totally dedicated to serving the public.

"So much so, that he recently fought his way back from injury to continue serving as a frontline cop.

"He was immensely popular with all his colleagues, both at South Tyneside and throughout the force."

He added: "My heartfelt sympathies, and those of all staff at South Tyneside area command, lie with Neil's wife and family."

The crash in which Pc Gartland died, involved a petrol tanker, a diesel tanker, two lorries and a car.

Shortly afterwards, there were two further crashes involving more than 20 vehicles.

Ten people were taken to hospital with injuries.


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