Lorry driver who ploughed into back of car and killed man blames sneezing fit
A lorry driver who ploughed into the back of a stopped car on the A1 and killed its driver claimed he crashed because he had a sneezing fit. Raymond Buff, 55, hit the Volkswagen Golf near Eaton Socon on December 9, 2019, after failing to stop for stationary traffic. The car’s driver, Matthew Mitchell, 39, died in hospital the next day.
Buff claimed to police at the scene he had a sneezing fit, stopping him from seeing the traffic in time. At Peterborough Crown Court Buff admitted causing death by careless driving and was sentenced at Peterborough Crown Court to nine months in prison, Cambridgeshire Police said.
The crash killed the driver of the Volkswagen Golf, and injured more (Getty Images/iStockphoto)
He was also disqualified from driving for a year. Detective Sergeant Mark Dollard said: “Mr Buff was a professional, experienced HGV driver, but he was responsible for the collision on the A1 and the subsequent death of Mr Mitchell.
“Mr Buff claimed he failed to react to congested traffic owing to a sneezing fit. “This highlights the importance of being always aware of your surroundings while driving, and this is even more important if you are driving a lorry.
The lorry driver was jailed for nine months at Peterborough Crown Court (Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Buff was also disqualified from driving for a year. The impact of the crash had been so severe it caused Mr Mitchell’s Volkeswagen to spin 180 degrees and collide with three other vehicles.
Two other people taken to hospital with minor injuries at the time were later discharged. Earlier this year three people died and more were seriously injured following a multi-car pile-up on the A1 on January 17. Police said three men aged 34, 25 and 38 died at the scene and two people were taken to hospital with serious injuries.
The three-vehicle crash happened just before 1am on Sunday morning on the A1 northbound near Wothorpe, Cambridgeshire Police said, but details of the three tragic deaths have only just been released.
It came after a fourth person was killed in a separate, four vehicle crash on the same road that morning.