Grieving families in young drivers plea

THE DEVASTATED families of two young men who died in separate road crashes have both made emotional pleas for young motorists to take more care.Carl Anderson, 17, died when the Ford Escort he was a front seat passenger in collided with the stationary cab of a lorry on an industrial estate in Clacton.

THE DEVASTATED families of two young men who died in separate road crashes have both made emotional pleas for young motorists to take more care.

Carl Anderson, 17, died when the Ford Escort he was a front seat passenger in collided with the stationary cab of a lorry on an industrial estate in Clacton.

And 23-year-old Russell Hearn lost control of his Ford Escort which landed on top of him when he crashed in the town.

Mr Hearn survived the accident but died five days later in hospital with his parents, Michael and Linda, at his bedside.


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Speaking at his home in Little Clacton yesterday, Michael Hearn said he had since learned that a lot of his son's friends did not wear seat belts when driving.

He said: "Like so many kids he loved his car, he had not had it that long but he had his speaker system in it and put the lights underneath.

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"I have found out that he did not wear a seatbelt a lot of the time and he came out of his car and it landed on top of him.

"I was called out to where the crash happened in Oxford Road and he was still there in the ambulance when I got there.

"The fire service had lifted the car off him and he was still alive, although he was unconscious."

Mr Hearn, who was a plasterer and lived with his parents, was rushed to Colchester General Hospital before being transferred to a specialist unit at Old Church Hospital in Romford after the accident on September 10.

But despite battling on, the father-of-one died last Thursday evening leaving behind his two-year-old daughter, Morgan.

Struggling to hold back tears yesterday, his father added: "It is just such a pity because when you are young, you do not worry about all the things to come later in life.

"But one moment's silliness can take it all away, and I would just ask people to think for a second about how they drive so that other families do not have to go through what we are experiencing at the moment."

He also paid tribute, saying: "Russell always had a smile on his face and was of a smiley disposition and everybody liked him.

"He was not a keen sportsman or anything like that, his car was his joy and he will be sorely missed."

Carl Anderson, who was one of 66 people to be killed on the county's roads this year, died on Thursday night.

The 17-year-old from Holland-on-Sea had started an NVQ in computing at Colchester Institute just two weeks ago and yesterday his mum, Erica, said he had really been enjoying himself.

Mrs Anderson, who has three other children, Vanessa, 16, Alex, 14, and Liam, seven, said when her eldest had not returned home by the early hours of Friday morning, she had a feeling something terrible had happened.

The 36-year-old primary school assistant said: "The last time I saw him I had dropped him off at the train station before he went to college.

"That night I got the knock on the door from the police, but I knew before they knocked because I had been in bed and looked at the clock and just knew then.

"He was full of life, just a typical 17-year-old and was very happy, he loved his music and had been to the Live 8 in London which he really enjoyed.

"He just liked hanging out with his mates, having lots of fun and I treasure every moment of his life, even the moaning we had - I just loved to see him with his friends, always messing around with smiles on their faces."

But the 36-year-old pleaded for young drivers to be more careful when they are out and about.

"In Clacton there are a lot of 17, 18 and 19-year-old drivers and I just want them to be aware of the possible consequences of driving - that things may happen to them no matter how confident a driver you are, it does happen."

The 17-year-old driver of the Ford Escort which Carl was in remains in hospital, and Mrs Anderson said she wished him well.

"I want to thank all Carl's friends and our family who have been wonderful since it happened."

n Mr Hearn's funeral is open to all and will be held at Weeley Crematorium on Friday September 30 at 12.30pm. Carl Anderson's funeral details have yet to be arranged.

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