A new initiative warns motorists of the dangers of using mobile phones while driving. It features Liese Bowers-Straw, who suffered serious physical and emotional injuries following an eight vehicle crash on the M1 in Leicestershire.
On the evening of Tuesday 25 November 2014, a 38 year old woman was making calls on her mobile phone when she lost control of her car as she was driving southbound on the M1. Her vehicle collided with an HGV which lost control and crossed over the central reservation where it struck a BMW, travelling in the opposite direction. The driver of the BMW died.
Eight vehicles were caught up in the collision, three people were taken to hospital and the driver of one of the cars, Liese Bowers-Straw sustained serious injuries for which she is still receiving ongoing medical care.
The 38 year old woman was sentenced to five years in prison in July 2016 after being found guilty of causing death by dangerous driving.
According to BRAKE, the road safety charity, more than two in five crashes are thought to be caused, at least in part, by driver distraction. If you talk on a phone at the wheel – hands-free or hand-held – your risk of causing an injury or death is four times higher. Use a phone to text, email or browse the internet and the risk is even higher still.
Liese agreed to take part in a video warning motorists of the dangers of driving while using mobile phones. She said;
“If I can stop just one other person suffering what I have suffered then it will be worthwhile. I remember seeing the headlights coming towards me where headlights shouldn’t be and I remember thinking that’s it, I’m a goner, I’m dead and then I don’t remember anything until the following day.”
“The collision has completely changed my way of life. I have gone from having a career I loved, having a job that I loved, doing a lot of work, to being a prisoner in my own home doing absolutely nothing.”
“Just think before you pick that mobile phone up. Is that text or call that important? Is that text or call worth a life? I don’t think so.”