A widow who lost her husband to a boozed-up motorist has helped launch North Yorkshire Police’s Christmas campaign against drink driving.
The force has made a film with Lorraine Allaway, to depict the devastating effects of drinking or taking drugs and getting behind the wheel of a car.
Lorraine’s husband Bob was killed in a road traffic collision with a drunk driver in October 2015. In the film she speaks bravely and openly about the experience of losing Bob and what life has been like since the death of her husband.
At 12pm on Saturday 3 October 2015, Bob was riding his motorbike along the A65 near Settle to join Lorraine at her terminally-ill sister’s bedside when he was hit head-on by a drunk driver. He died at the scene.
A roadside breath test showed the driver had 83 microgrammes per 100ml of breath – nearly two and a half times the legal limit of 35.
Andrew Crook, 48 from Swinnow in Leeds, was jailed for four years and eight months and banned from driving for five years and eight months.
North Yorkshire Police’s Major Collision Investigation Unit conducted an investigation into the collision and found that whilst under the influence of alcohol ,Crook had driven his vehicle across double, solid white lines onto the wrong side of the road and collided head on with Bob.
Speaking about why she agreed to make the film, Lorraine said: “If this film stops one person from getting behind the wheel of a car after they have been drinking or taking drugs, and causing the devastation that my family have experienced, then I will be happy. At the end of the day, if you have been drinking or taking drugs you have choices; take a taxi, a bus or walk, the choice is yours. Either way, it’s better than a police car because you have killed someone or a hearse because you’ve killed yourself. The last thing your family needs at Christmas is a police officer knocking on your door to say ‘I’m terribly sorry to tell you… but your loved one is dead.”
Traffic Sergeant Andrew Morton of North Yorkshire Police's Roads Policing Group, said: “The heartache and agony that Lorraine and her family have been through since Bob’s death is unimaginable and I’d like to thank Lorraine for her bravery and agreeing to support our campaign. The completely tragic thing is that Bob did not have to die in this way, at the roadside due to the selfish actions of a man who was nearly two and a half times the legal limit for alcohol.
“Our determination to catch drink and drug drivers and take them off the road remains as strong as ever – North Yorkshire Police Road’s Policing Group is out there and we will catch you. You will face a court appearance, a hefty fine, a driving ban and, like the man who killed Bob, the possibility of a prison sentence.
“Members of the public who have information about anyone who is driving under the influence of drink or drugs have been instrumental in the arrest and prosecution of drink and drug drivers in previous campaigns. I would again like to appeal to anyone who has information about someone drink or drug driving, please contact North Yorkshire Police on 101, select option 1 and pass the details to the Force Control Room. Your actions may prevent another family going through the agony the Allaway family has very sadly experienced.
“For those who would prefer to remain anonymous, please contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555111. Your call could save someone’s life.”