LETTERS: Accidents involving lorry drivers

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The Independent Online
Sir: Does the driver of the lorry that killed Jill Phipps deserve sympathy ("The death of a brave woman"; leading article, 3 February)? Those of us who have been tailgated by lorries or who have had to take swift evasive action when a lorry abrup tly changed lane on the motorway know that lorry drivers regularly play Russian roulette with our lives in order to meet unrealistic schedules imposed by employers. Many are operating illegally and the launch of Brake, a campaign to press for tighter con trols on lorries (report, 3February), must be supported.

At a number of locations around the country, protesters are throwing themselves in front of lorries. If there is a shadow of doubt as to whether it is completely safe to proceed, the driver should simply stop. One could also argue that it is unreasonablefor employers knowingly to send their drivers into such situations.

Yours faithfully, Vassili Papastavrou Bristol 4 February