Norfolk truck driver in court after Tesla is crushed by blocks

14:38 23 November 2021

A driver has been fined after a £ 50,000 car was smashed under tons of concrete blocks that fell from the back of a truck.

Company CEO Neil Collins and his wife miraculously escaped injury after the blocks fell on his Tesla Model 3 car on the B1535 at Weston Longville.

Still from the dashcam shows concrete blocks falling from truck

Still from dashcam shows concrete blocks falling from truck on B1535 at Weston Longville.
– Credit: Neil Collins

The load fell off a truck driven by David Terry as it rounded a corner and down on the electric car on April 20 this year.

The Norwich Magistrates’ Court heard that the blocks caused “significant damage to the vehicle”.

Prosecutor Stuart Cowen said the driver’s wife, a passenger in the car, was taken to hospital by ambulance after the incident, although there were no long-term injuries as a result of the accident.

Cowen, who described it as an unusual case, said Terry was interviewed by police and said he had not been responsible for loading the blocks on the vehicle.

Terry, who has no previous convictions, however, had secured the cargo “the same as I had done before”.

Terry, from The Street, Hindringham, near Fakenham, appeared in court on Tuesday (November 23).

He pleaded guilty to having used a vehicle where the weight, the distribution of its load, namely the pallet of bricks, was such that its use on a road posed a risk of injury.

Ian Fisher, conciliator, said Terry, who has no criminal record, had been driving cars and trucks for more than 40 and 35 years, respectively, with a “spotted” record.

Mr. Fisher said: “He is a proud man with exemplary driving status.

“He is very disappointed to be in this position.”

He worked as a driver and performed agricultural work for a haulage company based in Hindringham, but was also outsourced to perform other work for other operators, as he did when this incident occurred.

On the day, he went to the Lenwade depot and sat down inside his cab, which he was required to do when the concrete blocks were loaded with forklifts.

Fisher said, “He is not allowed to play any role in the loading at all.”

After putting on the truck, Terry had to help secure the load with garbage straps.

Fisher said Terry believed the incident happened as a result of damage to the wooden pallet when the blocks were loaded with forklifts.

Mr. Fisher said, “If one of the pallets’ planks gets damaged, the substrate for the slabs will become unsafe.”

Alan Lusher, chairman of the bench, said the injuries as a result of the incident were relatively minor.

He accepted that Terry had a “quite exemplary” driving record and imposed three penalty points.

Terry was also fined £ 267, ordered to pay costs of £ 85 and a bid of £ 34.

Collins, 51, and his wife Alison, 50, were traveling from their home in Bunwell to visit Holkham when the blocks fell on the car.

Speaking at the time of the incident, Mr Collins credited the car, which had only 700 miles on the clock, for saving their lives.

“The windshield collapsed, but luckily it held up pretty much. It was pretty amazing that we walked away, ”he said.

Tesla’s built-in dashcam captured the shocking moment when the blocks fell from the truck and crashed onto the bonnet, windshield and roof.

The footage has made headlines around the world and has been shared on Tesla-enthusiastic social media sites as far away as America, Canada and Australia.

Collins said he had also been contacted by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA), which plans to use the footage and photos in a social media campaign to spread knowledge of.

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