Crash tragedy highlights risk of texting

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The Independent Online

Police warned of the dangers of texting while driving today as an 18-year-old was jailed for dangerous driving in a crash that left his teenage passenger dead.

Isaak Playford, 18, of Mill End Road, Cherry Hinton, Cambridge, was sentenced today to almost two years in prison and disqualified from driving for four years at Cambridge Crown Court, police said.



The teenager was driving a Citroen Saxo when it left the A142 at Mepal, Cambridgeshire, and hit an electricity pylon on 12 January.



His 17-year-old passenger Sarah Oldham, from Sutton, Cambs, died at Addenbrookes Hospital in Cambridge two days later.



Today Cambridgeshire Police said investigations found Isaak had been texting moments before the collision.



The teenager pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving earlier this month, they said. He was jailed for 21 months.



Inspector Alan Page, from the force's roads policing unit, said: "Police inquiries following this tragic crash revealed that Isaak had been texting moments before the collision.



"Sending or reading text messages while driving is very dangerous and research has shown it reduces your reaction time by 35 per cent.



"I would ask people: is sending or receiving a text message really worth endangering your, or someone else's life for?



"The circumstances of this case show how fragile life can be if someone does not give driving their full attention."