Mum of boy, 8, who died on M6 calls for automatic breaking 'to prevent others from same grief'

Meera Naran tells ITV News Central why she's calling for Dev's Law

A campaigner whose son was killed on a smart motorway has urged the government to bring in new rules over automatic braking systems.

Dev Naran, 8, was killed in May 2018 on the hard shoulder of the M6 in Birmingham, when his grandfather's car was hit by a lorry.

Since his death, his mother Meera has campaigned in his memory and spoken out against the expansion of smart motorway networks across the country. 

Now she is calling for "Dev's Law", a campaign that states making Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) compulsory in new cars would save lives.

Meera said: "It's already been mandated in Australia and the EU.

"Road safety experts have said that it's a guardian angel in line with safety measures like  seatbelts and airbags.

"It really is the next logical step in preventing collisions."

Dev Naran was killed when a lorry smashed into the back of the car he was sat in.

Meera, who has devoted her life to campaigning about road safety since her son died in 2018, says this technology could prevent other families from suffering the same grief.

She said: "This technology could have saved Dev, and by campaigning for Dev's Law, I hope it will prevent another family from going through this.

"My campaign is all my unspent love for Dev, and if he were here he would have all of that love. 

"I'd be cooking for him, we'd be going to football clubs or doing his homework, and all I am  doing is pouring all of that into my campaign to use my grief in a positive way and save the lives of others."

How does Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) work?

AEB is a technology that monitors the road ahead of the vehicle and will automatically brake the car if the driver fails to respond to a collision threat.

It works by using sensors to detect the presence of a potential hazard in front of the car.

Campaigners say it's the most important safety development in motor manufacturing since the seatbelt.

It acts like an extra pair of eyes on the road, and unlike the airbag or seatbelt which activate during the crash, AEB can help avoid the collision altogether.

How has the Department for Transport responded?

A Department for Transport spokesperson said: "We are committed to making use of new and emerging technology to help improve road safety for motorists across the nation.

"We’re currently considering the vehicle safety provisions within the EU's General Safety Regulation, which includes advanced emergency braking (AEB), to determine requirements that are appropriate for new vehicles in Great Britain.”