Driver sent texts seconds before hitting M6 workers
A driver was involved in text message exchanges moments before his car ploughed into two traffic officers on the M6 in Cumbria, killing one and paralysing the other, a court has heard.
37-year-old football agent, Peter Morrison, had an ongoing text conversation “with a number of people” on his mobile phone while driving south on the motorway.
These included his wife Siobhan, along with business colleagues and clients including several footballers.
The final WhatsApp message Morrison sent was 96 seconds before the collision, to Nottingham Forest striker Zach Clough.
Just before 12.10pm on 21 February, Morrison’s Mercedes ML 4×4 veered off the M6 in “atrocious” wet and windy weather south of Tebay.
It hit 51-year-old highways workers Adam Gibb and Paul Holroyd on the hard shoulder as they watched two crashed vehicles being recovered.
Mr Gibb, of Penrith, was killed while his Kirkby Stephen-based colleague was seriously injured and left permanently paralysed from the chest down.
Morrison, of The Warke, Worsley, Manchester, admits his careless driving was responsible for the pair’s respective death and injuries, but denies driving dangerously.
Minutes before the crash, Morrison had asked footballer Mr Clough: “Do you have a vid of the goal?” Mr Clough responded: “Not saved on my phone, no.” The player followed up: “Have you seen it?”
Morrison replies “yes” before sending a internet link to the player 96 seconds before the Mercedes recorded the collision. Several minutes afterwards, Mr Clough responded: “Not bad was it, ha ha.”
Earlier in his journey, Morrison had been in message contact with young Manchester City defender Cameron Humphreys.
The court has heard Morrison was travelling at an average of 81mph in the 23 miles before the fatal smash.
But Morrison is said to deny driving too fast immediately before the crash, and further denies being distracted by his phone at the time of impact.
He was seen to be clearly shaken and “dazed” immediately after the incident. He told police he had lost control of his vehicle and “just felt like I was on ice”.
The trial continues.
Photo: ITV Border