LBC callers share experience of 'death trap' smart motorways

2 November 2021, 15:36 | Updated: 2 November 2021, 17:52

By Seán Hickey

Nick Ferrari hears the first-hand accounts of motorists who have been left traumatised by their experiences on smart motorways.

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Aisha phoned in from Hitchin to tell Nick Ferrari that she broke down on a smart motorway last week, leaving her "absolutely terrified" while she waited for authorities.

"No hard shoulder just leaves you completely at the mercy of other drivers being vigilant."

She told Nick that "it was horrifying to get over to what we would consider the slow lane", from where she was – the fast lane, on the other side of the motorway.

Nick couldn't believe his ears.

She commended the emergency services, who were there "within a few minutes." The caller said that "they had to close off the motorway" to get her out safely.

She believed that motorists have become "completely and utterly reliant on other drivers being completely aware and focused" when using smart motorways. "There is no safety net."

Lee is a HGV driver who uses smart motorways regularly as part of his job. His story lent to the horror Aisha experienced after her car broke down, as he told Nick what it is like to spot and evade broken down cars on the road.

He began by calling for "more emergency lay-bys" on smart motorways to give motorists a lifeline should they break down.

Nick heard from the caller that on a number of occasions he's had to make split-second decisions to dodge cars on smart motorways that are left stranded after break downs.

"They appear out of nowhere."

The caller concluded by insisting that smart motorways "are death traps". "That's what I've been calling them forever", Nick said.

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