Bedfordshire lorry driver died after crashing into the back of Royal Mail truck

A Bedfordshire lorry driver who died after crashing into the back of a Royal Mail truck may not have been wearing his seatbelt, an inquest has revealed. Kevin Thompson, 57, died after the lorry he was driving smashed into the back of the Royal Mail vehicle on the M25 earlier this year. The motorway was completely closed for six hours during the incident on April 16.

A post-mortem carried out at Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow, Essex, gave Mr Thompson’s cause of death as multiple injuries. At Essex Coroner’s Court on Wednesday (October 9) it was claimed that Mr Thompson had likely not been wearing his seatbelt at the time of the crash. PC Alan Barlow told the court: “The seatbelt was trapped behind the seat which lead us to deduce that Mr Thompson had not been wearing it at the time of the crash.”

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The court heard how the traffic ahead of Mr Thompson’s lorry had slowed down due to an earlier incident on the road, and there had been signs warning of the queueing traffic for three quarters of a mile before it.

An air ambulance landed at the scene

PC Barlow said: “Tyre scuffs show that Kevin had applied emergency breaks and left hand steering to try and avoid the collision.”

Mr Thompson’s lorry was traveling at 53mph when the breaks were put on, while the truck he hit had been moving at around 10mph. PC Barlow said: “I have considered what might have happened to cause Kevin to not be aware of the truck in front slowing. “He could have been intoxicated, he could have suffered a medical incident, he could have been suffering fatigue or he could have been distracted.”

He went on to confirm with Mrs Beasley-Murray that toxicology tests had revealed that there was no alcohol or drugs in Mr Thompson’s system. Mr Thompson was also not known to have any illnesses that could have caused the crash. Previous breaking recorded on the same stretch of road also suggested that Mr Thompson was not suffering from fatigue.

PC Barlow said that it was possible that Mr Thompson had been distracted before the crash happened but admitted: “We will never truly know what caused the crash to happen.” Following the crash, Mr Thompson’s family paid tribute to him, they said: “Kevin was a kind, caring, fun-loving family man who will be missed greatly.

Bedfordshire lorry driver died after crashing into the back of Royal Mail truckKevin Thompson died in the crash

“He was a very experienced lorry driver and worked hard in all that he did.

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Bedfordshire lorry driver died after crashing into the back of Royal Mail truck

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“We would like to thank all those who stopped to help him at the scene of the accident, as well as the emergency services.”

Bringing the inquest to a close, Mrs Beasley-Murray concluded that his death happened as a result of an accident.

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