'Shocking' footage shows motorist driving wrong way down M61 slip road towards oncoming HGV

A woman who drove the wrong way down a motorway slip road towards oncoming traffic on the M61 has been banned from driving.

Kayleigh Lowe, 30, of Kilsby Close, Farnworth, appeared at Preston Magistrates’ Court yesterday (Monday, January 27) where she was sentenced for several driving offences. A traffic officer from Highways England initially came across Lowe’s car stopped on the southbound entry slip road onto the M6 at junction 3 at around 11.25pm on April 8, 2019. The same officer then came across Lowe’s car stopped on the entry slip road leading to the Rivington services on the M61 a short time later.

The officer then followed Lowe as she left the services in her car, with dash cam footage from the patrol vehicle showing her exiting the services the wrong way – along the entry slip road and towards oncoming vehicles. An oncoming HGV can be seen flashing its headlights before Lowe turns her car sharply to the left to rejoin the motorway in the right direction.

An oncoming HGV can be seen flashing its headlights before Lowe turns her car sharply to the left to rejoin the motorway in the right direction. (Credit: Lancashire Police)

Sgt John Jennings-Wharton, of the Lancashire Police Forensic Collision Investigation Unit, said: “This footage is shocking to watch. “On two occasions Kayleigh stops in a live lane of a busy motorway, then she drives the wrong way towards oncoming vehicles which includes a HGV.

“Her reckless and selfish behaviour could have easily resulted in serious injury or death, devastating numerous families and leaving the emergency services to pick up the pieces. “I’m satisfied that Kayleigh has received this ban and that it will give her time to reflect on what could have happened due to her dangerous driving.” Lowe was reported for summons and subsequently pleaded guilty to:

– Two counts of stopping a vehicle on a carriageway of a motorway – One count of a vehicle entering the motorway at a prohibited place – One count of driving a vehicle the wrong way on a motorway

– One count of a vehicle making a U-turn on the motorway Special Constable Mike Newsham, from Lancashire Constabulary’s Safer Roads Team, which dealt with the incident, said: “Following a complaint from Highways England I viewed the dashcam footage and it was clear several offences had occurred. “Members of the Safer Roads Team are committed to doing all we can to make Lancashire’s roads safer for all of us and I hope today’s sentencing sends out a clear message that dangerous drivers will be brought to justice.”

In court Lowe was handed an eight week ban for each offence, to run concurrently, plus fines totalling GBP255. READ MORE: Stork Inn fire: Emergency services rush to incident at Conder Green near Lancaster Ros Drew, On-Road Service Delivery Manager at Highways England, said: “We are not an enforcement body but we work actively and closely with the police and other agencies to ensure all drivers can enjoy safe journeys on our motorways – and we won’t hesitate to help support prosecutions like this.

“We introduced cameras in all our vehicles a couple of years ago and were happy to have that footage used in court by Lancashire Police today to prosecute someone who has put her own safety and the safety of other road users and road workers at risk by selfish and some downright dangerous behaviour.”

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