Tributes to man crushed to death when handbrake was left off lorry

The family of a husband killed when he was crushed by a lorry have issued a heartfelt tribute as a man was sentenced over his death. Lorry driver Konstantin Georgiev failed to apply his handbrake correctly which meant his truck rolled into a trailer unit which killed 48-year-old Craig Stopforth who was stood between them. The incident took place in Common Lane in Fradley, on January 11, 2019.

Craig's wife, who has not been named, said in a statement: "It's with the greatest regret and deepest sense of loss that I have had to say goodbye to my husband, needlessly killed in January 2019. "I miss every atom of him. His big laugh, huge hugs and wicked sense of humour.

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"To say I love and miss him endlessly just isn't enough.

"The effect his death has had on myself and our family is overwhelming." The two men were swapping trailer units when the accident happened. But following a detailed investigation by the Staffordshire and West Midlands Serious Collision Investigation Unit, it was found that 43-year-old Georgiev had failed to apply the handbrake to his tractor unit and the parking brake on his trailer was also not set, the court was told.

Consequently, when connecting the air-hoses, the vehicle slowly rolled forward and crushed Mr Stopforth who was at the back of his trailer. Mr Stopforth's trailer unit was parked in front and he was changing his registration plates over at the time.

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And if you later decide that you no longer wish to receive the emails, you can just follow the unsubscribe link in the newsletters - though we hope this won't ever be necessary. The two were working for a transport company in Telford at the time. Georgiev, of Corran Road, Stafford, was given a six-month jail sentence, which was suspended for two years today, Friday, June 19, at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court after pleading guilty to causing death by careless driving.

Sergeant Richard Moors, from the Staffordshire and West Midlands Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said after the case: "This was a tragic event.

"I would urge drivers of any vehicle, not just lorries, to ensure their own and others safety and check that the handbrake is correctly engaged before exiting their vehicle.

"A family have been left devastated by the actions of Georgiev that night in, what was, an easily avoidable incident."

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