A teenager has died in a head-on smash on the outskirts of Whitby.
Dan Rollins (18), known to his friends as ‘Dollins’, suffered fatal injuries as he was driving back home to his family in Whitby when his Seat car was involved in a head-on collision with a Vauxhall Corsa on the A171 near the Ugthorpe turn-off.
The 60 year-old local woman driving that car is in James Cook hospital in Middlesbrough after having sustained serious injuries. A woman who was driving a Ford was also injured after having to take action to avoid the Corsa.
This week his devastated family told the Gazette that Dan was looking forward to the future and harbouring dreams of travelling the world.
The former Caedmon and Whitby Community College pupil had just started a new job and completed an offshore survival course which would enable him to get a job on the rigs and hopefully travel.
When he hadn’t returned home on Tuesday evening as planned, mum, Sue Rollins of Westbourne Road tried to ring Dan but got no answer. She found out the terrible news after a family friend came across the scene and recognised the distinctive stickers on the wreckage of Dan’s mangled car.
She rushed to the scene but collapsed at the road side when police wouldn’t let her through the road block.
She said: “When I rang him and got no answer I presume it had already happened. On the way up there I was just saying it doesn’t matter about the car as long as he is alright.
“When I got there they would not let anybody through, there were lorries and cars and we were stuck behind and parked on the hard shoulder. I ran up but they would not let me go to the car - he was still in it.
“I just collapsed and the police picked me up and told me to come home.”
Within minutes of getting home the house was full of his mates who stayed until the early hours of Wednesday morning wanting to pay their respects and reminiscing about Dan, who Sue said was a “wild child” and “lived life to the full”.
Dan had been desperate to be able to learn to drive and the Seat car was an 18th birthday present from Sue.
Sue added: “I got him his car for his 18th but gave it him early when he passed his test. I don’t think he had been out of it. He loved the freedom of his wheels. The day he passed his test I had rung the insurance company and he was stood on the front door step waiting for them to say ok.
“He was definitely a wild child but he just loved to party and lived life to the full.”
But behind all that Sue told how Dan loved his family and was a father figure for his 14-year-old sister Tiffany. He also had a half brother, Johnny, who is 25.
Dan used to play for Whitby Rugby Club’s under 16s side as a prop forward, played cricket for Mulgrave Juniors and was desperate to take his new puppy, black labrador Vin for a walk after he had had his injections.
Sue added: “It is his sister I feel sorry for. She looked at him as a father figure and he was the man of the house. His friends are devastated and can’t believe it, I don’t think they still can.”
Police are appealing for witnesses to the crash which happened at around 6.45pm on Tuesday. Dan was pronounced dead at the scene and the road was closed until 3am Wednesday morning.
Traffic Sergeant Neale Rees, of the Road Policing Group, said: “This is a very serious collision and I am appealing for witnesses to come forward as a matter of urgency.
“We also need to hear from anyone who was travelling on the A171 Whitby to Guisborough road from around 6pm up to the time of the crash at 6.45pm on Tuesday.
“If you can recall seeing any of the vehicles involved in the build up to the collision, please get in touch.”
If you can assist the investigation, please contact North Yorkshire Police on 101, select option 2, and ask for Nicola Burnett. Or email firstname.lastname@example.org