A lorry driver has been jailed after he accelerated into stationary traffic on a busy motorway after apparently falling asleep at the wheel.
Mariusz Wlazlo, 47, ploughed his fully-laden HGV into two cars at 43mph whilst travelling southbound on the M6 between junction 8 and junction 7.
Footage from the lorry and from another nearby car shows how Wlazlo, who was an agency driver behind the wheel of an Eddie Stobart vehicle at the time, was speeding up at the time of the impact.
Wlazlo, who was in a 40mph zone of the M6 at the time of impact, hit a VW Polo, which then smashed into a Toyota Verso.
The Polo driver, a woman in her 50s, spent weeks in hospital where she was treated for broken ribs and fractures to vertebrae.
The Toyota driver was released from hospital after treatment for back and neck pain.
The M6 southbound was closed for 90 minutes after the crash, which happened at around 9.40pm on 15 March this year.
At the scene, Wlazlo told police: “I think I went to sleep for a moment. I can’t explain as I don’t remember. It was like a dream.”
Wlazlo, who held a full, clean UK driving licence and had no record of motoring offences in his home country of Poland, initially denied causing serious injury by dangerous driving.
He changed his plea to guilty and was jailed for 16 months at Wolverhampton Crown Court on 29 November.
Wkazlo, of Alderwood Avenue, Liverpool, was also banned from driving for three years and eight months, and ordered to take an extended re-test.
Pc Gareth Phillips , of the Central Motorway Police Group, said: “The collision has had a devastating impact on the victim in the Polo.
“Although she has made a physical recovery, she now feels unable to drive on the motorway.
“Wlazlo was clearly not paying attention and indeed was accelerating into stationary traffic at the time of impact. It shows just how important it is to keep fully focussed on the road and surrounding conditions, and to always abide by the speed limit as displayed on gantry signs. If the speed he had been travelling had been any higher, this collision would likely have had fatal consequences.”
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