“I’ve never witnessed rain like it, not in this country.”

Those are the words of one local resident after a fatal car crash near her home during the height of Storm Ciara on Sunday.

A 58-year-old Micheldever man died on Sunday afternoon as he drove home from Winchester on the A33.

A tree had fallen on his Mercedes and although emergency services attended, he died at the scene.

The incident happened near Micheldever, between the Duke Street and Winchester Road turnings, near Deer Leap.

Sharon Hunt lives nearby and saw the emergency services arrive in the aftermath of the incident.

She did not see or hear the crash itself – “it was so windy you’ve got a job to hear anything,” she said – but was alerted when she saw flashing blue lights through her window and traffic building on the road.

“It must have been half 3ish,” she said.

“We didn’t realise how bad it was. All of the traffic was stopping up the hill and they could obviously see the tree was down.”

Basingstoke Gazette:

Sharon describes the incident as a ‘horrendous freak accident’ and notes that there were no other cars involved, just the driver of the Mercedes and the tree.

The Micheldever resident also recalls the weather being at its worst around the time of the crash.

She said: “I have never seen rain like it, it must have been during that. It was like a whirlwind.”

“I’ve never witnessed rain like it, not in this country,” she continued.

“You couldn’t even see, so whether that poor person had to pull over – you dread to think what happened, it’s horrible – whether he had to pull over or whether there was debris in the road, you just don’t know.”

The road remained closed for “several hours” according to police, and Sharon says it must have been 10pm by it was cleared.

Police arrived “very quickly” and were joined by firefighters from Basingstoke, Winchester, Eastleigh and Overton, who remained at the scene until around 8.30pm.

However the 58-year-old Mercedes driver was pronounced dead at the scene.

His next of kin have been informed and are being supported by specialist officers.

Police are now investigating the incident.

A statement from Hampshire Constabulary read: “Anyone who witnessed the incident, or who may have dashcam footage of the Mercedes in the moments leading up to the incident, can call 101, quoting 44200050630.”