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Prince Philip, 97, gives up driver's licence after car crash

Last Updated Feb 9, 2019 at 5:53 pm EDT

News media film broken glass and car parts on the roadside near the Sandringham Estate, England, where Prince Philip was involved in a crash while he was driving on Jan. 18, 2019. PA via AP/John Stillwell

Prince Philip has decided to stop driving at the age of 97, less than a month after he was involved in a collision that left two women injured, Buckingham Palace said Saturday.

The palace said in a statement that “after careful consideration,” the Queen’s husband “has taken the decision to voluntarily surrender his driving (licence).”

Philip was behind the wheel of a Land Rover near the Royal Family’s Sandringham estate in eastern England when he smashed into another car on Jan. 17. Philip had to be helped out of his overturned vehicle but wasn’t injured. Two women in the other car were injured, though not seriously, and a nine-month-old baby boy was unhurt.

Philip was photographed driving again two days later, without a seatbelt. Police said they offered him “suitable words of advice” after that.

The prince was not charged in the crash. Police said he and the other driver were both given breath tests for alcohol and passed.

In a letter of apology to one of the injured women, Philip said he was dazzled by the sun when he pulled onto a main road near the royal retreat, 160 kilometres north of London.

He told Emma Fairweather, who suffered a broken wrist in the crash, that “I can only imagine that I failed to see the car coming, and I am very contrite about the consequences.” The letter was published by a newspaper.

There is no upper age limit for licensing drivers in Britain, although drivers over 70 are required to renew their licences every three years and tell authorities about any medical conditions that might raise safety issues.


Related content:

Prince Philip tells car crash victim he is ‘deeply sorry’

UK police speak to Prince Philip about not wearing seatbelt

Prince Philip, 97, recovering after car crash


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