A CAR which ploughed into a Barrhead couple, leaving them fatally injured, during a rally was involved in another crash a day earlier, an inquiry has heard.

David Carney was driving the car at the Jim Clark Rally, near Coldstream, in May 2014 when it struck Iain Provan, 64, and his 63-year-old partner Betty Allan.

Giving evidence at a fatal accident inquiry at Edinburgh Sheriff Court, Mr Carney said his vehicle had come off the road the previous day and hit a tree.

He added that it had been repaired by his team of engineers and then undergone further repairs on the day of the fatal crash as the rear of the vehicle had felt unusual during the morning stages of the rally.

Mr Carney, 29, from Ireland, said that, once those repairs had been carried out, the car had "felt perfect."

The inquiry also heard from rally marshal Tom Rogers, 27, who said the site of the fatal crash was like "a war zone."

He told the court that, if he had known people were standing in that area, he would have stopped the cars.

Mr Provan, Ms Allan and a third man – 71-year-old Len Stern, from Bearsden – were all killed when the car being driven by Mr Carney went out of control while crossing a jump on the rally course.

The inquiry is examining their deaths, as well as the death of Joy Robson, 51, at the Snowman Rally, in Glenurquhart, in 2013.

Giving evidence, Mr Rogers said he was marshalling at the Swinton stage of the Jim Clark Rally on the afternoon of May 31, 2014, when the crash happened.

He said he had been standing in a crowd of spectators as the cars passed over a humpback bridge and could not see the people standing at the crash site, apart from a man in a media tabard on the opposite side of the road.

He told the inquiry he heard a "bang" when the crash happened.

Mr Rogers added: "I can remember two cars going over the bridge at about the same time, one after another, and as the car landed, it lost control and went into the field, to the right of my view.

"I saw the landing of the car as he started losing control but I didn't see the end position.

"The car went off the road and immediately there was a sense of panic around the area."

He said people began running to the scene and a spectator told him people had been standing at the crash site, so he closed the stage and alerted the emergency services.

Mr Rogers told the court: "There was people running around everywhere, there was a car in the field. There were three or four people lying on the ground.

"It was like a war zone or something."

Mr Rogers, from Aberdeenshire, said the co-driver of the car asked him why people were in the area and he replied: "I didn't know they were there."

Advocate Depute Andrew Brown QC asked him: "You would have stopped the rally if you knew people were in that area?"

Mr Rogers replied: "I think, on the day, I would have done because it's the difference between one media guy and six people. I didn't realise people were in that area."

He added that members of the media tended to move around and stand in areas away from ordinary spectators.