GOLFING hero Colin Montgomerie admitted he was "lucky" to escape serious injury when his car collided with a van on a busy road yesterday.
• Colin Montgomerie, left, at the scene. Picture: Karen Greenshields/STV News
The Scot, captain of the winning European Ryder Cup team, was treated for minor injuries at the scene of the accident on the A80, near Cumbernauld, in North Lanarkshire.
But Mr Montgomerie, who was pulled out of his car by other motorists, later revealed he had been given a "terrible shock" by the accident, which left his silver BMW 7 series badly damaged.
Police said the driver of the other vehicle, a delivery van, had been charged with road traffic offences.
The incident happened around 11.25am yesterday near Condorrat, between Moodiesburn and Cumbernauld, on part of a contraflow system where a 320 million programme to upgrade the A80 to a motorway is being carried out.
A lorry and a car were also involved, but no-one was taken to hospital.
However. the accident caused the A80 to be closed in both directions for nearly an hour.
Mr Montgomerie, 47, suffered shock and bruising to his left side, but felt well enough to be taken back to Perthshire without going to hospital. However, he later pulled out of a charity event due to be held in Inverness today, a walk in aid of the Elizabeth Montgomerie Foundation, which he set up in memory of his mother.
He said: "I began spinning out of control.
"I was trapped as the side of the car was compressed and the air bags were holding me back but the passenger door suddenly opened and I was pulled to safety thanks to drivers who witnessed the accident.
"It was a terrible shock and I am lucky to have come out of it relatively unscathed, thanks I am sure to the car I was driving."
One motorist said: "The area where the crash happened was near the cut-off for Condorrat. The queues were at least four miles long in each direction by lunchtime."