Use the phone whilst driving. This could happen to you.

Use the phone whilst driving. This could happen to you.
It could be you that causes an accident. It could be someone else who crashes into you. Just a quick check of the email. It can’t hurt. Perhaps I should just reply to that text message or check Facebook.

Yes, it’s that video from the news, and this is the short 19-second one that a lot of tabloids have plonked onto their websites. It’s real, it’s what happened and you should watch it with discretion..

Shocking. There’s no doubt about it. It’s shocking. However, people use their phones whilst driving every day. Generally speaking our roads are pretty safe, but on a long straight road or a familiar everyday commute, people can’t resist the urge to check a smartphone.

The driver of this truck, Tomasz Kroker, was using his mobile while his vehicle rumbled along the A34 near Newbury at more than 50 mph. He looks up from his phone a couple of times whilst it bears down on the queue of cars, but fails to take any action and smashes straight into them.

One of those cars contained four family members – a mother and three kids. They got pushed under a lorry which was in front of them and all of them sadly perished. Tracy Houghton, 45. Ethan, 13, and Joshua, 11, and Aimee Goldsmith, also 11. They never knew what hit them. Tomasz Kroker first hit the white van, which shunted into a car towing bikes on a trailer, and that pushed the family forward.

The brief video above isn’t the whole story though, because it was clipped from the full Thames Valley Police video below. The family members left behind explain how the deaths have impacted their lives. It’s just heartbreaking, and caused all because a driver was pointlessly flicking through music tracks on his phone.

It’s telling that haulage companies have to put cameras pointing out and into the cabin to try and monitor driver activity. It’s also perhaps part of the reasons why self-driving and collision-avoidance technology is being worked on. Sadly though, with less and less road police out there, there’ll always be a few who’ll chance their arm.