Police vow to keep watch on M62 drivers

26/04/2013 Ross Parry Agency/Chris Fairweather.  'Pcture shows an aerial picture of M62 Motorway fatal crash between a lorry, minibus and car.
26/04/2013 Ross Parry Agency/Chris Fairweather. 'Pcture shows an aerial picture of M62 Motorway fatal crash between a lorry, minibus and car.
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Police have vowed to take action against dangerous motorway drivers to cut the death toll in accidents on the M62.

Investigations are underway into a series of crashes, including one which involved a collision between a lorry and a minibus which was on its way to a hen party in Liverpool on April 26, and killed 18-year-old Bethany Jones, from South Elmsall.

Many of her 19 friends on the bus were seriously injured. Eight have now been discharged and 11 are still in hospital. All are reported as suffering from non-life threatening injuries and are in a stable condition. The lorry driver was arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving has been bailed.

Officers have pledged to stamp out bad behaviour, which includes using mobile phones, tail-gating, watching television while driving and eating and drinking at the wheel.

Figures show that there has been on average 13 accidents a month over the last five years, resulting in 1,503 casualties.

Of these, 106 were killed or seriously injured, the vast majority, 1,397 were slight injuries.

From the 839 incidents from January 2007 to the end of December 2011, the most recent validated figures available, 1,954 vehicles were involved.

The vast majority of them between junction 22 at Rishworth Moor and junction 34 at Selby involved cars (1,295) followed by light goods vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes (102) and heavy goods vehicles which are above 7.5 tonnes (46).

Chief Inspector Mark Bownass from West Yorkshire Police’s road policing unit said: “This month we will be dealing with this offence about heavy goods vehicles driving too close and on their phone or eating their sandwiches or watching television which someone has been found doing.

“Police officers will be on the look out and will be dealing with them robustly. The operation will look at these issues especially around the motorway section.”