Police have released footage of a fatal car crash that they want all drivers to watch to warn them about the dangers of texting behind the wheel.
The shocking video shows the moment that a lorry driver ploughed into stationary traffic as he changed the music he was listening to on his mobile phone.
Driver Tomasz Kroker was jailed for 10 years for causing the deaths of Tracy Houghton, 45, sons Ethan, 13, and Joshua, 11, and her partner’s daughter Aimee Goldsmith, also 11.
Kroker was also banned from driving for seven years.
The footage, which was taken from a dash-cam, shows Kroker scrolling through the music on his phone.
Unable to break in time his lorry crashed into traffic causing an eight-vehicle pile up.
The car carrying the family was crushed to a third of its size.
Police arrived at the collision on the northbound carriageway of the A34 between the East Ilsley and West Ilsley junctions shortly after 5.10pm on August 10 2016.
Five other people were also injured in the crash.
Det Sgt Gavin Collier, from the Serious Injury Collision Unit, said:
This was a truly devastating case where a mother and three children lost their lives and a man was seriously injured.
The most tragic element of this incident is that it was avoidable. Tomasz Kroker was looking at his mobile phone while driving, this needless and avoidable act has resulted in the most devastating and horrific circumstances.
No sentence will bring back Tracy, Aimee, Josh and Ethan but their families have asked that we reinforce how dangerous it is to use a mobile phone while driving.
The dash-cam footage has now been released by Thames Valley Police as a part of a video that aims to warn people against the dangers of being on your mobile phone while driving.
In the video Aimee’s mum, Kate Goldsmith, spoke about how it ‘sickens’ her to see drivers on their phones.
If they had seen the devastation they brought my family, or to other families, by using phones, illegally… distracting themselves from driving a potential weapon…
Would they be as sickened as we are?
In a tweet Surrey Police have stated that they have already shown the film to a lorry driver who had been caught using his phone behind the wheel.
The video, as you no doubt will ask, was the in cab video footage of the A34 fatal collision.
Shows how tiny distraction leads to fatalities
— RPU – Surrey Police (@SurreyRoadCops) July 3, 2017
The tweet said:
Driver of a 26-tonne lorry stopped after the driver was texting with both hands.
Six points. £200 fine and some hard hitting video shown to him.
The video, as you no doubt will ask, was the in cab video footage of the A34 fatal collision. Shows how tiny distraction leads to fatalities.
Hopefully this shocking video will encourage others to stop texting behind the wheel.
It could cause someone’s death.
Emily Murray is a journalist at UNILAD. She graduated from the University of Leeds with a BA in English Literature and History before studying for a Masters in Journalism at the University of Salford. Emily has previously worked for the BBC, ITV and Trinity Mirror. When Emily isn’t writing about topics including mental health and entertainment, you can find her at the cinema which is her second home.