A5 crash showing tractor hanging over edge of road bridge©Denbighshire Free Press

Two farming brothers who narrowly escaped death after a terrifying tractor crash on a 43m-high road bridge say they are lucky to be alive.

Farmer Joe Wilson, 23, was driving the John Deere tractor with his brother Ben, 26, sitting in the passenger seat, when it crashed through a barrier on the A5 road in Chirk, near Wrexham.

The crash, which involved a Ford Fiesta and a Vauxhall Corsa, left the Deere tractor teetering on the edge of the 43m bridge, which is a major trunk road on the Shropshire/North Wales border.

See also: Tractor driver cheats death after dramatic bridge crash

The front wheel of the tractor was dangling over the side of the bridge, but somehow the tractor managed to stay on the road.

The two brothers suffered only cuts and bruises in the crash and said they were lucky to still be alive.

“I don’t really know what happened, it’s all a bit of a blur,” Joe Wilson told Denbighshire Free Press. “I did manage to get out of the tractor myself.”

“We could have been killed quite easily,” added his brother Ben, a farming contractor.

“We’re just thankful to still be here today. Our family feels grateful that we never went over the edge.”

Tractor crash

©Llangollen Fire and Rescue Service

At the time of the crash, the brothers had been travelling from Penyclawdd Farm, Pentredwr, near Llangollen, to Oswestry.

The crash, which happened on Monday 19 January, forced the closure of the A5 Chirk bypass in both directions between Halton Roundabout and the B5070 Chirk Road for two days to allow repairs to be carried out on the bridge.

One woman driver, aged in her 30s, was taken to Wrexham Maelor Hospital, where she was treated for injuries which were not thought to be life-threatening.

The A5 Chirk bypass is a notoriously bad stretch for accidents resulting in either death or serious injury.

Official accident statistics show that from 1997 to 2008, eight people lost their lives in crashes on 20km stretch of the road from Dovaston to Chirk.

In March 2010, Stewart Davies, 45, of Mold, Flintshire, and William Thomas Hefin Jones, 43, from Cardigan, Cardiganshire, were killed when a cattle lorry and a car collided.

Joe Wilson added his voice to calls for more safety measures to be taken out on the road.

“Something needs to be done on that road but whether it will be is another matter. I think it needs to be made into a dual-carriageway.”

Chirk South councillor Terry Evans said: “I do feel that something needs to be done urgently because there have been several accidents more or less in the same place in recent years.

“Those two lads who were driving the tractor were extremely lucky not to go over the edge.”

Cllr Evans said he was due to meet local MP Susan Elan Jones on 6 February to discuss possible measures to improve safety on the road.

He added: “The maximum speed limit needs to be reduced. I’d like to see average-speed cameras between both roundabouts.

“Several other measures come to mind, including chevrons, a split crash barrier and no overtaking at all on the bridge.”

A spokeswoman for West Mercia Police said: “There have been no arrests made at this stage.”