Man's car crushed and dragged by lorry in M1 brush-with-death

A man whose car was crushed and dragged by a lorry on the M1 near Northampton has spoken out about his experiences.

Monday, 20th March 2017, 5:18 pm
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 11:25 am
Emergency services were on the scene in 15 minutes to cut Wesley from the car.

His car was wrecked and he now deals with nerve damage on a daily basis after he pinned against the central reservation by the drifting truck.

Miraculously, he walked away from the ordeal after finding a safe position in the car - by putting his head out the sunroof.

Wesley Belcher, 35, from Northampton town centre, said: "All I could do was try to keep the car straight. After that, you were just along for the ride as the car collapsed around you."

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Wesley Belcher, 35, miraculously walked away from the dramatic accident.

He was driving home alone on the M1 between J15a & J15 on February 23 last year. There were no other vehicles around except for a lorry in front of him.

Wesley said: "The lorry started drifting to the middle lane without indicating. I didn't think much of it. So I moved over to the second and then the third lane to overtake him.

"Then I saw he was still drifting over. I was only halfway past him when I realised he wasn't going to stop drifting.

"I slammed the brakes on. By now I had made a conscious decision to touch the concrete barrier to give him room.

Wesley's car mounted the concrete barrier, pinned into the air and dragged along the motorway.

"Then I'm out of control. The lorry squashed my car against the central reservation and popped the right-side wheels up off the ground and onto the barrier. It was dragging me dragged along the motorway. I had to keep the wheel straight or I might have gone under his wheels.

"The car collapsed around me and my stuff was flying everywhere. Sparks were hitting me in the face. I was grinding against the concrete and it was just a noisy, roaring ride for at least 10 seconds.

"I found a little bubble to survive in by putting my head out the sunroof, where the glass had popped out. If anyone else had been in the car that night, they would have been done for.

"The lorry driver must have realised what happened as we just came to a stop eventually. He leant out the window to ask if I was alright. Then I called 999."

The passenger-seat side of Wesley's car was crushed in the accident. Fortunately, Wesley was driving alone when it happened.

Emergency services arrived within 15 minutes and the fire brigade freed Wesley from his wrecked car.

He suffered only minor injuries from the dramatic incident, with two small cuts to his head and hand.

Wesley said: "Everyone was amazed to see me walking around. Because no one was seriously hurt I don't think the police arrested the lorry driver.

"I now think he must have fallen asleep at the wheel and slumped to the right."

Wesley's Car in the aftermath.

Northamptonshire Police were unable to comment on what action was taken towards the lorry driver.

Wesley, who is an electrician and has a long-term girlfriend, is now getting treatment for nerve damage sustained in the crash, which causes his hand to go completely numb in certain positions.

He said: "For the first few months afterwards it was a right nuisance to drive as my hand would just go numb at times.

"I joke to some people that I was only driving on that section of the motorway on my way to buy more vaping fluid for my e-cigarette. So if I had kept smoking it would never have happened."

Wesley Belcher, 35, miraculously walked away from the dramatic accident.
Wesley's car mounted the concrete barrier, pinned into the air and dragged along the motorway.
The passenger-seat side of Wesley's car was crushed in the accident. Fortunately, Wesley was driving alone when it happened.
Wesley's Car in the aftermath.