POLICE are appealing for witnesses to establish how a man came to plunge from a bridge onto the A38 – causing traffic chaos and closing the road in both directions for more than two and a half hours.
Top detectives at Staffordshire Police are attempting to piece together the reasons why the 26-year-old plummeted from a footbridge near Shobnall playing fields onto the northbound carriageway between Clay Mills and Branston on Monday night.
The man – who is from Burton – was airlifted to hospital with serious but not life-threatening injuries at around 6.40pm.
The road was not completely reopened until 9.10pm to allow officers to comb the scene for clues.
The incident left hundreds of drivers stranded on the carriageway for hours (pictured above) as they attempted to return home following a busy bank holiday weekend.
Witnesses have claimed on social network sites that the man jumped, however police chiefs insisted that he had ‘fallen’ into the path of oncoming traffic.
A spokesman for Staffordshire Police spoke to the Mail about the incident.
He said: “Just before 6.40pm on Monday police and ambulance were called to reports of a man in the carriageway of the northbound A38 near Burton.
“It was reported that the man had fallen from a footbridge near to the Shobnall playing fields area.
“The carriageway was immediately closed and the southbound was also closed to allow the air ambulance to attend the incident.
“The man, a 26-year-old from Burton, was taken to the University Hospital of North Staffordshire.
“He suffered multiple fractures but his injuries are not believed to be life-threatening.
“His next of kin are aware of what has happened.
“It is not believed that anyone else was involved in the incident.
“Motorists are thanked for their patience while the road was closed.
“The southbound carriageway was reopened at around 8.30pm and the northbound at around 9.10pm.
“Witnesses to the incident, that have not already spoken to officers, are asked to contact the police.”
Anyone with information should call 101, quoting incident 568 of May 26.