CHELSTON Highways Agency workers acted swiftly when a fatal accident along the M5 brought a National Blood Service van transporting 17 blood products to a standstill.

The fatal accident, which appeared on the front of the County Gazette, happened on November 26 between junctions 25 and 26 and involved 17 vehicles.

Highways Agency traffic officers, based at the Chelston Outstation near Wellington were on hand to save the vital supply of blood held up in traffic.

The National Blood Service van was transporting the blood from Bristol to patients needing treatment in Exeter and Plymouth.

Traffic officers were already on the scene redirecting traffic when they received a call from the National Blood Service at around 8.30pm.

After locating the van quickly they turned it round and escorted it back to the previous junction so it could continue on its journey.

Fay Simcox, a spokesperson for the National Blood Service said: "Our routine deliveries were held up by the unfortunate incident that occurred. To ensure our blood delivery schedule was not delayed further the Highways Agency allowed the National Blood Service van to be escorted from the motorway.

"We are grateful to the Highways Agency for assisting us and allowing us to continue with our vital life saving delivery."