M4 lorry fire - drivers face prosecution for trying to film on phones

Some drivers now face prosecution after trying to film while behind the wheel. Credit: Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service

Several drivers are facing prosecution after trying to film a serious lorry fire on the M4 near Swindon.

Police say they caught 12 people using their phones behind the wheel as they tried to get footage of the fire, which happened between junctions 15 and 14 of the M4 on Friday (17 July).

Wilts Specialist Opps posted on Twitter this morning: "Following the lorry fire on the M4 a number of vehicles ended up striking the cones on the road too busy staring and filming the burnt lorry, due to a few near misses 12 drivers can now expect to hear from us for being on their mobile phone!"

Both sides of the road were closed just after 2pm due to the "nature of the fire and contents of the lorry", according to Highways England.

People were seen getting out of their cars and sitting on the central reservation, despite warnings to stay in their vehicles.

Pictures show the scale of the fire, which closed the road for hours. Credit: Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service

Highways England said on twitter: "Please approach the area with caution and if you are in the stopped traffic please do not leave your vehicles.

"Due to the nature of the fire and the contents of the lorry we are looking to start installing full closures of the M4 in both directions between J14 and J15.

"If you are in the trapped traffic please bear with us, we will work to get you moving soon."

There were heavy delays as a result of the closure, with traffic also busy in Marlborough and Hungerford as drivers attempted to take alternative routes.

The eastbound side, which was closed for longer, was reopened just after 6pm.

There have been no reported injuries in the incident.