POLICE drafted in sniffer dogs after the driver of a crashed car could not be found at the scene.
The driver of a Mini had a lucky escape when the car smashed through a Cotswold stone wall and hit a tree.
All three main emergency services raced to the scene but no-one involved in the crash was there.
Police called in their dog handlers and canines to help find the driver, who it is believed left the area.
The crash happened on the A46 at Inchbrook between Stroud and Nailsworth early on Sunday morning.
Police, and fire and ambulance services were called at around 4am, after neighbours heard a car crash in to the wall at the junction next to the former Crown Inn. The noise of the impact was so severe that initial calls to police reported that a lorry had crashed.
A nearby resident said one person was seen in the Inch Brook after the crash. It is not believed serious injuries were sustained by those in the car.
Only the black Mini was believed to have been involved.
“We were told not to leave our properties because it could spoil the scent for the tracker dogs,” said one resident, who did not wish to be named.
“Several people in homes around here heard a massive bang, then men’s voices. They were talking quite loudly.
“One of them seemed to be in the stream.
“It seems no-one was seriously hurt but it’s yet another crash here.
“The wall has been ruined, and the car was only stopped by the tree. If they had hit the tree harder, it could have crushed the car. Luckily for them, the tree stopped the car rolling in to the brook.
“I dread to think what could have happened then.”
He said the bends at Inchbrook have been the scene of many crashes over the years.
According to crashmap.co.uk there have been 11 collisions there since 2005 but he said there have been many more.
“The road is under a 40mph limit but drivers don’t seem to appreciate that,” said the resident. “Dozens of times I have been out to help people who have crashed their cars there.”
A police spokesman confirmed no-one had been questioned or arrested over the incident and inquiries are ongoing.
Witnesses, or anyone who knows anything about who was in the car, should call police on 101.