Suffolk

Mendlesham lorry crash: HGV driver jailed for death

Dalius Matulaitis Image copyright Suffolk Constabulary
Image caption Dalius Matulaitis felt unwell before he set off from Norwich to Felixstowe, the court heard

A lorry driver who caused the death of a father and seriously injured his young daughter after blacking out at the wheel has been jailed.

Colin Fisk, 43, died when the lorry being driven by Dalius Matulaitis crashed into his car on the A140 at Mendlesham, Suffolk, on 25 July.

Ipswich Crown Court heard Matulaitis, who admitted driving dangerously, had been feeling unwell before he set off on the journey from Norwich.

He was jailed for four years.

Judge David Goodin said "no sentence can reflect the horror of Mr Fisk's needless death".

He was jailed for causing death by dangerous driving and causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

LIVE: Updates on Suffolk news

The court heard Matulaitis' vehicle could be seen "swerving" across the road as he travelled southbound to Felixstowe.

Just before 11:20 BST, the articulated lorry drifted over to the northbound carriageway, hit another lorry, and then struck Mr Fisk's Renault, sending it on to the verge.

The lorry rolled on to its side and the 40ft shipping container it was carrying hit Mr Fisk's car, partially crushing it.

Mr Fisk, from Kesgrave, near Ipswich, died at the scene. His seven-year-old daughter Jacee, who was trapped in the car for about an hour, broke both collarbones.

'Plainly dangerous'

The court heard Matulaitis, of Rectory Gardens, Wisbech, did not feel well and had been looking to stop, even though he had just passed a lay-by.

His blackout was "brief", it was heard.

Judge Goodin told him: "Your decision to continue was plainly dangerous.

"Although the indications are that Jacee will make a full recovery from her injuries, the mental and emotional scars will be with her beyond doubt forever."

In mitigation, Matulaitis was said to be "devastated by the harm he had caused".

The judge banned him from driving for five years.

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites