Drink driver Adrian Radu jailed for 11 years after causing the death of Chorley man Mark Downham in motorway collision

Drink driver Adrian Radu has been jailed for more than a decade for causing the death of Chorley man Mark Downham.

Thursday, 13th September 2018, 2:20 pm
Updated Thursday, 13th September 2018, 3:27 pm
Radu, 28, of Alfreton Road, Nottingham, wasgiven an 11-year jail sentence for causing the death of Mr Downham, afather-of-four, when heattempted a U-turn on the M1at about 5.40am on Saturday, March 24 (Photo: PA)

Radu, 28, of Alfreton Road, Nottingham, was given an 11-year jail sentence for causing the death of Mr Downham, a father-of-four, when he attempted a U-turn on the M1 at around 5.40am on Saturday, March 24.

He was also handed a 13-and-half-year driving ban after pleading guilty to causing the death of Mark Downham by dangerous driving.

A judge at Nottingham Crown Court said Radu - who was found with a bottle of whisky in his jacket - had shown a reckless disregard for the safety of other motorists before his "disgraceful" decision to drive away from the scene towards oncoming traffic.

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The court had previously heard how Radu, originally from Romania, was seen by other motorists driving a Vauxhall Astra on the M1 southbound in an erratic and dangerous manner prior to the collision, often stopping for no apparent reason.

Dash cam footage of the crash showed Radu’s Astra travelling ahead of the lorry in lane two.

Suddenly the car broke sharply and commenced a u-turn manoeuvre which caused another vehicle travelling in the same lane to take evasive action and swerve into lane three to avoid colliding with it.

Due to the last-minute swerving of this vehicle the van driver who was travelling behind in lane two was unable to avoid colliding with the back of Radu’s Astra.

The van then hit the offside of the lorry.

Following the crash Radu failed to stop at the scene and instead drove northbound in lane four of the southbound carriageway of the M1, for approximately 550m before eventually coming to a stop.