Police in Lisburn have released a photo of the aftermath of a near-fatal road collision in a plea for drivers to slow down and take more care.
The photograph shows a piece of wooden fencing that penetrated a rear window before piercing the driver's headrest, missing his skull by inches.
It also skimmed the top of a baby car seat, visible in the background.
The photo was released with the permission of the driver, who police say is in hospital with a number of injuries including suspected broken ribs. Local media reports that the driver had to be cut from the car.
It is believed there were no children or passengers in the car at the time.
“A full investigation has been launched to determine the cause of this accident, but this picture shows that the driver of this vehicle was just inches away from a serious head injury," Chief Inspector John Wilson of Lisburn PSNI said.
"He is in hospital suffering from a number of other injuries including suspected broken ribs but he gave us permission to use the picture so we could show just how shocking this was.”
“Look carefully at this photograph. Understand the reality of this situation. Drive safely, and do all you can to avoid being in the same situation. This driver was incredibly lucky not to sustain much more serious injuries.”
73 people have been killed in the North so far this year. Police say there have been 145 fixed penalty notices issued in the area since the beginning of October.
In the Republic, Gardaí report 176 deaths so far in 2014, from 162 separate collisions. That number is comprised of 76 drivers, 35 passengers, 34 pedestrians, 20 motorcyclists, 10 cyclists and one in the pillion passenger/other category.
— Dave Molloy