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Leave space plea after RAC van hit by car on M4 hard shoulder

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Shocking photographs showing a patrol van after it was smashed into by a car on the hard shoulder of the M4, have been released by the RAC.Andrew Barrett, who has been with the RAC for 14 years, was changing a customer’s tyre last week when his three-tonne vehicle was hit by a car.He said: “I looked up to see my van rolling towards us and the car spinning into the live lane. It was horrific.”The RAC is calling for drivers to leave space when passing motorway breakdowns.Mr Barrett was helping a stranded driver near junction 15 of the M4 for Swindon on Thursday, when his patrol van was hit by “another car travelling at speed”.The RAC said the collision was of “such force” that it rolled the three-tonne van, pushing it along the hard shoulder.

Mr Barrett, said: “One minute I was changing the customer’s front wheel the next I heard an almighty crunch and looked up to see my van rolling over towards us and the car spinning into the live lane.”It was not an experience I want to repeat.”The stranded driver was knocked unconscious as he moved out of the way, according to the RAC.The driver of the car was able to climb out of his vehicle despite being injured.Steve Robinson, the RAC’s health and safety consultant, said the “shocking photographs” demonstrate the need for drivers to “slow down, make space and move on – when passing motorway breakdowns”.”Our patrols attend hundreds of broken-down vehicles every week on motorways, dual carriageways and high speed roads where they may be working just a few feet from cars and lorries speeding past at 70mph-plus,” he said.”This incident serves to show how dangerous it can be for anyone who has to stop on the hard shoulder of a busy motorway.”In September, a recovery truck driver died after being hit by a lorry on the hard shoulder of the M25, and on the M69 a breakdown truck driver died in a three-vehicle collision.
Source: Wiltshire BBC