French lorry driver who was using mobile on M20 causing him to crash has been jailed

A lorry driver who caused a serious motorway collision near Ashford while he chatted on the phone, has been jailed for two years.

At around 8am on Wednesday 21 February 2018, a lorry driven by 44-year-old Jeremy Didisse collided with four stationary vehicles which were queuing to exit the coastbound M20 at Junction 10 at the time.

Two of the vehicles were crushed by the lorry, a Mini Cooper and a Seat Ibiza. Both of the drivers, a man and a woman, suffered serious injuries and were taken to a London hospital.

At the time of the collision Didisse was using his mobile phone via a hands-free kit and an investigation by Kent Police revealed he had been making calls for around three hours leading up the collision.

He was charged with two counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

Didisse, 44 from Avenue Ferber, Marquise in France, admitted the charges and was sentenced at Canterbury Crown Court on Friday 21 February 2020 to two years in prison. He also received a five-year driving disqualification and must sit an extended retest before he is allowed to drive again.

Investigating officer PC Daniel Perez from Kent Police’s Roads Policing Unit said: ‘Although there are a number of legal hands-free devices that drivers can use, they are a recognised distraction for motorists.

‘Didisse failed to react to the queuing traffic ahead of him because he was too busy focussing on his phone conversation.

‘Two people were seriously injured that day but there could have easily been fatal consequences. When you drive a large vehicle such as a lorry, regardless of your experience, it is crucial you give it your full attention.’