Advertisement

  1. ITV Report

'We urge you to make a personal commitment to make our roads safer for everyone' - full family statement

The crash scene. Credit: Thames Valley Police.

Following the sentencing of Tomasz Kroker today, the family of Tracy Houghton, her sons Ethan and Joshua, and Aimee Goldsmith, spoke passionately outside court.

They urged people to stop using mobile phones behind the wheel - and caused the lorry driver's actions "reckless".

Here is their statement in full, read by Aimee's mother Kate Goldsmith:

"Today Tomasz Kroker has been sentenced for killing much loved members of our family, however, in our eyes the sentence does not do justice to the crime committed. Tracy Houghton, her two sons Ethan and Joshua, and Aimee Goldsmith were innocent victims of his actions.

"On the 10th August 2016, Mr Kroker made the decision to change music on his phone, whilst driving a lorry at 50MPH. His lorry hit a queue of stationary traffic killing our four family members and seriously injuring another driver. In the moments Mr Kroker chose to look at his phone, he caused a multiple-vehicle accident that endangered all surrounding road users and took the lives of Tracy, Ethan, Josh and my daughter Aimee. To all intents and purposes, Mr Kroker’s use of his mobile phone whilst driving turned his lorry into a lethal weapon. He was so distracted he made no attempt to slow down.

"The sentence of 10 years in prison will not ease our pain and suffering, nor do we believe it will send a strong enough message to those who lack the self-restraint to not use their mobile phones whilst driving. Anyone using a mobile whilst driving is guilty of dangerous driving. It only takes a second of distraction to kill someone, destroying your life, your family’s lives and those of your victim and their family.

"Today’s outcome must serve as a reminder to us all of our responsibilities every time we drive and that decisions we make can be fatal. Our children lost their lives because of the reckless actions of Tomasz Kroker, but we are not the only family to have suffered due to what is perceived by many, as a minor inconsequential crime, a crime that takes place on our roads every single day. We urge you to make a personal commitment to stop using mobile phones whilst driving and make our roads safer for everyone."

– Family statement.

More on this story