Concern over death toll on roads

THE death toll on Essex roads reached an all-time high last month with 14 people killed in crashes - twice as many as in June last year.And the number of people killed in road accidents in the county this June was more than 15% of the total number of deaths in 2005, when there were 90 fatalities.

By Juliette Maxam

THE death toll on Essex roads reached an all-time high last month with 14 people killed in crashes - twice as many as in June last year.

And the number of people killed in road accidents in the county this June was more than 15% of the total number of deaths in 2005, when there were 90 fatalities.

There have never been more people killed on the county's roads in a month - although there have been 14 fatalities in a month once before, an Essex Police spokeswoman said.


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Among the tragic losses of life in road accidents last month, were 22-year-old Essex University student Richard Watson, who was involved in a collision with a taxi in Clingoe Hill, Colchester, on June 2.

Motorcyclists James Youdabe, 22, of Stanbrook, Thaxted, and Keith Wilkin, of Globe Walk, Tiptree, were killed on June 4 and 5.

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The latest horrific crash claimed the lives of a young Hungarian couple when their broken down car was struck by a lorry on the hard shoulder of the M11 between Stansted and Harlow on Thursday.

On the previous Thursday, Desmond Blowers, 33, of Rainham, died in a similar accident on the M11 between junctions nine and eight.

An Essex Police spokesman said yesterday: “It's a horrendous number of people that have been killed this month.

“Any death on the road is unacceptable. The only message we can continue to put out is road safety is paramount.”

He warned motorists not to stay in their cars if they break down on motorways and dual carriageways and stop on the hard shoulder.

“It's paramount for their safety they get out of the car and get on the embankment away from the road, well behind the crash barrier.

“If you are on the hard shoulder, always watch the oncoming traffic. The hard shoulder is the most dangerous lane on the motorway.”

Police were yesterday questioning a 50-year-old Polish lorry driver following the latest fatal crash on the M11, in which a 26-year-old man and 25-year-old woman from Hungary were killed on the southbound carriageway just before 5pm.

juliette.maxam@eadt.co.uk

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