Pensioner's 15 miles of motorway madness

* 81-year-old drives wrong way on M65 * Car swerves and crashes to avoid her * Licence is likely to be revoked...

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Jim Holder
27 March 2008

Pensioner's 15 miles of motorway madness

A pensioner has avoided prosecution despite driving the wrong way down the fast lane of a motorway at 40mph.

Martha Harwood, 81, drove her Suzuki Ignis for 15 miles on the wrong side of the M65 in Lancashire, going past seven junctions.

One car had to swerve into the barrier to avoid her. The four passengers in the crashed car all required hospital treatment.

The police had to shut the motorway for five hours to get Mrs Harwood off the road and then clear up the accident damage.

Mrs Harwood explained that she was going home to Darwen, Lancashire, from a friends house at 10pm when she got confused by a new layout near Blackburn.

She said: 'At first I didnt think there was anything wrong, then I saw cars coming towards me. It was quite scary, but there was nowhere to turn round so I just kept going.'

Despite her error, Mrs Harwood has not been arrested, but she is likely to have her driving licence revoked.