Van in police chase through Leith smashes into cars and leaves officer injured

Police are seeking help from the public to identify the driver.

Friday, 10th January 2020, 1:36 pm
Updated Friday, 10th January 2020, 6:07 pm
North Leith Sands Industrial Estate. Pic: Google Street View

A van being pursued by police through the streets of Leith smashed into several cars and left an officer injured before the driver managed to escape.

Police said the chase commenced after the Ford Transit van was seen driving at speed in Ferry Road at about 5:20pm on Thursday.

But one driver told the Evening News their car was hit by the van on Broughton Road at about 5:05pm, with two police cars then pursuing it along McDonald Road.

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The driver, Stacey, said she pulled over before the traffic lights near the junction when she heard sirens and saw the blue lights flashing in her rear view mirror. She said: "So I pulled over to let them pass and then the van came past my driver's side and clipped into the front right side of my car.

"At first I thought he was overtaking, not realising we'd all pulled over for the police but it was as he hit me, and the speed he was going, I thought 'oh my god they're after him.'

"It was so surreal, you see car chases on TV but I've never seen one in person let alone be partially involved in it. It wasn't until I called my stepdad minutes later that I got really upset and with the police too when I called them to report it. I was pretty shaken up for a while after."

After the ordeal, Stacey said she called her stepdad to say what had happened then logged a call with police at 5:15pm.

Police said the vehicle collided with several cars and damaged wing mirrors and bodywork, as well as a police car, with one officer suffering minor injuries.

But the van driver failed to stop and the pursuit ended near Great Junction Street.

The van was later traced in North Leith Sands Industrial Estate but the driver had made off.

Sergeant Jen Forbes said: "Our enquiries are ongoing to identify the driver of the van, but we are requiring the assistance of the public.

"We are appealing to anyone who was in the areas of Drylaw and Leith around 5.20pm last night (Thursday 9 January) and could have witnessed the incident to get in touch.

"There were a number of cars which have potentially suffered damage to wing mirrors or bodywork and I would ask residents to check their cars in case they have damage and report it to us.

‘I would also ask anyone with dash-cam footage to come forward, you may have captured something which could assist us in our enquiries."

Anyone who can help should call Police Scotland on 101, quoting incident 2597 of Thursday 9 January, 2020.