Ramsgate councillor’s coronavirus plea after crash leads to hospital check up

Tony Ovenden is asking people to take the virus seriously and follow government advice

A Ramsgate councillor is asking residents to take the coronavirus crisis seriously after he was taken to hospital following a crash yesterday (March 26).

Emergency services were called to the two car crash in Margate Road, by the College Road/Princes Road junction, at 10am.

One of the drivers, district councillor Tony Ovenden, was returning home after carrying out food deliveries to those unable to get shopping due to the coronavirus spread.

Although there were no serious injuries Cllr Ovenden was taken to A&E and while he was there staff asked about a dry cough he had.

He said: “Last Friday I arrived from Egypt it was 28 Celsius. Where we were staying was virus free and we were following home office advice . We left as a precautionary measure nothing else. Next day I went to work it was 6 Celsius on a open platform. It felt like the ice age at work.

“After three days I developed a slight cold and a dry cough. This always happens when I come home from Egypt, I knew what I had was a slight cold, it is typical. When I had the accident the powder from the air bag and the blow to the chest caused me to cough persistently.

“At A & E the doctor picked this up. She asked me about other symptoms regarding the virus of which I did not have. As I had been to Egypt she decided to get me tested anyway. The results were negative. I was advised to self isolate as I am over 60 and my wife is older than me.

“I had to wear a mask and went through the procedures for testing for coronavirus, ending up in a room full of some very sick people.

“The staff were wearing masks, gowns, which was something I have never seen before. I could sense this pressure the NHS staff were under, yet there was also this calm about them. One thing for sure was this was for real, i was not watching Holby City or Casualty. It was something I have never witnessed before.

“One poor man was literally gasping for air with breathing difficulties, it was not a pretty sight. I can only assume he must have the coronavirus. This really did wake me up to the point that I forgot about my car accident.

“I was given the all clear, just a cold, but my chest and breathing still does not feel right. I have been told I must self-isolate with my wife for 14 days and any problems contact my GP. All I can say to anyone a little bit sceptical about the coronavirus, just please follow the guidelines, this is very much for real.”

A Kent Police spokesman said: “Kent Police received a report of a two car-collision at 10.01am on Thursday, March 26.

“Officers attended the scene in Margate Road, Ramsgate and assisted with vehicle recovery. No injuries were reported.”


A high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)

A new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)

To protect others, do not go to places like a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. Stay at home.

Use the 111 online coronavirus service to find out what to do.

Use the 111 coronavirus service at https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19/

Government curbs to slow the virus spread

Only go out if you are:

  • shopping for basic necessities, as infrequently as possible
  • one form of exercise a day – for example, a run, walk or cycle – alone or with members of their household
  • any medical need, to provide care or to help a vulnerable person
  • travelling to and from work, but only where they cannot work from home

Participating in gatherings of more than two people in public spaces is also not permitted except in very limited circumstances, for example, where it is for essential work purposes.