Baby critical after canal crash

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A six-month-old baby was in hospital yesterday with head injuries after his mother drove her car into a canal to avoid a head-on crash. Police said the baby boy was in a "stable" condition at Leicester Royal Infirmary after the blue Ford Escort skidded through metal barriers into water four-foot deep, near a canal bridge in Leicester yesterday.

The Escort swerved on to the pavement when the driver tried to avoid a head-on collision with a car which was on the wrong side of the road travelling in the opposite direction. Sergeant Mark Barley, of Leicester traffic police, said: "The Escort was carrying a mother and her two children and a friend and her two children ... the baby boy was detained [in hospital] with critical head injuries." The other car involved failed to stop and police were appealing for witnesses.