A WOMAN was fighting for her life last night after a collision with a fire engine as she crossed Cowley Road in Oxford.
The area, between Shelley Road and Howard Street, was closed in both directions following the collision.
An eye-witness, who was driving down the road in her car when the incident happened, told of her shock.
The young woman, who did not wish to be indentified, said: “This woman was standing in the central reservation when a fire engine was coming down the road.
“It had its lights on, but she hesitated for a moment and then stepped out.
“I was so shocked.”
Oxfordshire County Council spokesman Paul Smith said the fire engine, based at Rewley Road, Oxford, was called out at about 3.40pm to an emergency on the Blackbird Leys estate.
The emergency was not a fire, according to Mr Smith, but he did not provide further details.
He said: “There were four firefighters in the fire engine and they gave first aid to the woman before the ambulance arrived.
“None of the firefighters were injured.”
Mr Smith was unable to say how fast the fire engine was travelling at the time of the collision.
Shortly afterwards, ambulance crews arrived and the woman, who neighbours said was a grandmother-of-four, was taken to Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital.
South Central Ambulance spokeswoman Michelle Archer said she had “potentially life-threatening injuries”.
A worker at Morrisons next to the scene said the police had taken sand and water from the store.
He said: “They couldn’t use the facilities in the fire truck because it was part of the scene.
“After the accident everybody in the area just stopped, it’s the sort of thing that leaves you a bit shaken.
“But straight away the police had a tarpaulin screen out to cover the scene.”
Police said the woman was believed to be in her 50s, but neighbours claimed she was likely to be in her 80s.
Littlemore resident Fiona Tapp was visiting the vet on the corner of Howard Street and Cowley Road when the fire engine came past.
Miss Tapp, who works in customer services, said: “I was sitting in my car when the fire engine came past and it had its sirens blaring.
“When I came out of the vets I saw the road had been closed off and I asked a bus driver what had happened – he told me it had been quite bad.
“The ambulance staff got there very quickly.”
Diversions were put in place and a number of local bus services were disrupted as a result of the accident.
Our top stories:
9:00am Monday 24th November 2014
PLANS to widen the A34 in both directions through Oxfordshire would cost at least £800 million, a new report has revealed.
12:44pm Monday 24th November 2014
THE A44 is closed following an incident between Spring Hill Road and Sandy Lane/ Rutten Lane between Yarnton and Begbroke.
3:55pm Monday 24th November 2014
A MOTORIST accused of killing 14-year-old Liberty Baker as she walked to school appeared in court today.
3:25pm Monday 24th November 2014
A SEVERE fog warning has been put in place for Oxfordshire overnight and into tomorrow morning.
12:00pm Monday 24th November 2014
Want to explore our interactive front page? Here it is...
9:46am Monday 24th November 2014
THE A44 near Wootton, West Oxfordshire has reopened in both directions after an accident.
9:25am Monday 24th November 2014
A WATER main has burst in Stratton Audley Road, Stoke Lyne, near Bicester.
9:10am Monday 24th November 2014
PHILIPPA Randels had met Sir Terry Wogan twice before but that didn’t stop her being at the front of the queue for a third meeting in Abingdon.
8:40am Monday 24th November 2014
AFTER 10 hours of non-stop salsa dancing, Bea Prentiss and her team could have been forgiven for wanting to take a well-earned rest.
8:37am Monday 24th November 2014
STAFF at the John Radcliffe are striking this morning in an ongoing row over pay.
8:30am Monday 24th November 2014
GUN owners will be able to hand in their firearms without fear of prosecution for two weeks from today.
8:20am Monday 24th November 2014
NHS staff including midwives, nurses, radiographers and cleaners are taking strike action today in protest over government cuts and privatisation of the health service.
8:32am Monday 24th November 2014
Buses are being delayed by heavy congestion this morning.