Dad fatally hit by two lorries on dual carriageway

A dad was killed when he got out of a vehicle on a busy dual carriageway early in the morning and was hit by two lorries. Father of four James Connors was first struck by a Volvo F8460 HGV and then by a Scania R450 tractor unit on the A55 near Tal-y-Bont just before 1am on April 1. The 41-year-old carpenter and gardener from County Wicklow, had travelled to Holyhead on the ferry on March 31 with the idea of catching a train to London to collect a caravan and pick-up truck.

An inquest into his death at Caernarfon heard how Mr Connors, known as Jim, approached Peadar O’Mahony on the ferry and asked for a lift to London. Mr O’Mahony described Mr Connors as being “highly intoxicated” but agreed to give him a lift. The driver said a short while into the journey Mr Connors requested to get out of the vehicle near Junction 12 on the eastbound stretch of the expressway.

Mr O’Mahony said he offered to drop him at the nearest service station but Mr Connors “insisted on getting out”. Shortly after he did Mr Connors, who was wearing all black, was struck by a lorry being driven by Dale Richard Walk. In Mr Walk’s statement, which was read out during the inquest, he said he had also come off the ferry and was driving along the A55 when “within a split second” he saw something out of the corner of his eye and felt a thud.

He pulled over and realised there was a body in the road and called the police and ambulance service. Mr Connors was then hit a second time by another heavy goods vehicle being driven by a Mr Recassius. Mr Recassius, whose statement was also read out, said he had come off the ferry and within 30 minutes saw one lorry parked up with its hazard lights on.

He then spotted what he believed to be a tyre in the middle of the road and concluded the lorry in front had suffered “a blow out”. Unable to change lanes because of another vehicle he struck the object which he later found out was in fact Mr Connors’ body Following his death a toxicology report was carried out and Mr Connors was found to have 242mg of alcohol in his system – more than three times the legal limit.

A post-mortem examination was not carried out but a doctor at Ysbyty Gwynedd ruled that Mr Connors had died of multiple traumatic injuries due to the collisions.

In a statement read out by his brother, William Connors, Mr Connors was described as a “happy-go-lucky” man who was family orientated.

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