A14 bridge plunge lorry driver ploughed into car and through crash barrier
Marcin Koziol's lorry at the foot of the bridge over the A14 at Claydon Picture: CONTRIBUTED
A lorry driver has been banned from the road after his truck smashed into a broken down car and plunged 25ft over a bridge.The scene of the crash below the A14 at Claydon Picture: PAULA IRVINE
Marcin Koziol's lorry was towing a trailer to the Port of Felixstowe when it crashed into the back of a SEAT Leon straddling the hard shoulder and inside lane of the A14 at junction 52 for Claydon. The impact sent the car spinning across the road into the fast lane as the lorry smashed through the nearside barrier and onto the roundabout below at about 6.25pm on July 28 last year.
Koziol, 39, of Eye Road, Peterborough, admitted careless driving at Suffolk Magistrates' Court on Tuesday. Prosecutor Colette Harper said the driver of the SEAT had pulled as far off the road as possible after suffering a tyre blowout, before activating the hazard lights, calling 999 and climbing over the barrier to a position of safety.The scene of the crash below the A14 at Claydon Picture: PAULA IRVINE
Eleven minutes after making the call, and after other traffic had managed to negotiate the obstacle, Koziol's lorry smashed straight into the back of the car, which was almost struck by a Transit van travelling in the outside lane of the eastbound carriageway. The road was closed for 24 hours and remains subject to speed restrictions.
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Koziol was in hospital for several weeks with a broken back and pelvis, before continuing his recovery at home.
Waqar Ali, mitigating, said he had 20 years of faultless professional driving experience across Europe and held an HGV licence for two years in the UK. He said Koziol had driven the same route numerous times at night, but saw the broken down car too late to take evasive action. 'There's no evidence he was driving without due care and attention on the entire journey, but he accepts his actions were not carried out in a safe way,' added Mr Ali.
'He's fortunate to be with us. It could have been a lot worse. 'He was on sick pay for a while, resulting in him being unable to make ends meet and losing his accommodation, but he has since managed to get back on his feet.
'He shows great remorse and is so frightened to drive that stretch of road that he has changed employer, despite the company wanting him to return.
'He risks losing the job he loves and finding himself back at square one if disqualified from driving.'
Koziol was banned from driving for six months and fined GBP350.