Looking back... Carrick family cheat death after barrier falls on their car

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A family from Carrickfergus cheated death by inches in March 1983.

They had a lucky escape after the security barrier at the Town Hall crashed through their car.

The freak accident happened as Mr Uel Stewart, his wife Jean and the children Jennifer and Janet were returning home from an evening at the Antrim Forum.

It was thought that a gust of wind caused the barrier to move and it crashed through the back passenger window and out through the rear window, narrowly missing both children.

Jean said: “The first thing we heard was a thud. Janet and Jennifer started to scream. It was a terrible experience, but I am just glad that no one was hurt even though the damage to the car was bad. I don’t know how the children were missed.”

The police were investigating the incident.

A spokesman from the Royal Ulster Constabulary said that the barrier should have been locked into place and that the person who had opened it last, may not have secured it properly.

The family car had only been purchased by Mr Stewart in the autumn of the previous year.