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A near accident in County Durham late last month is a stark reminder to professional drivers of the need for cautious lorry driving, especially during the winter months. The incident involved a large HGV, a mainline train, and a bit of ice. The good news is that there were no injuries reported.

According to the BBC, the HGV was approaching a level crossing at Hett Mill at the same time the train was approaching. Ice on the roadway prevented the driver from stopping the lorry properly. Instead, it skidded on the ice as it continued toward the crossing. The vehicle finally came to rest against the closed rail barrier. Had it continued past the barrier and onto the tracks, the vehicle and its driver could have been impacted by a train travelling at nearly 120 mph.

Police credit the driver with exercising appropriate caution on the roadway. He was driving slowly, in accordance with road conditions, but he was simply unable to stop due to the ice. Police say the outcome of the incident would have been much more serious had the driver not been exercising caution.

A police spokesperson told the BBC: “If the HGV was travelling any faster and the driver not being cautious, the outcome could have been very different. Luckily, albeit shaken, the driver of the HGV was uninjured.”

Training, Training and More Training

We are delighted to know that the driver of the HGV in County Durham was not injured or killed. We also agree with the assessment of the police spokesperson who told the BBC that the story is a ‘stark reminder’ to use extra caution in icy conditions. We believe it also underscores the need for continual training among professional drivers.

Every commercial driver undergoes a minimal amount of training in order to earn his/her licence. New CPC requirements now mandate additional classroom training every five years in order to maintain a valid licence. However, we believe extra remedial training is a good idea as well. Even experienced drivers can take certain things for granted over time – things such as how easy it is to lose control of a vehicle in certain conditions.

The HGV Training Centre is proud to offer remedial training to company fleets. We have been working with companies of all sizes throughout the UK for years. We can put together a remedial training programme for your company as well. Whether you maintain a fleet of just five vehicles or a larger fleet with hundreds, we can provide your drivers with the training they need.

We also offer driver training for individuals looking to become commercial drivers. Our lorry driving classes will teach you everything you need to know to pass the theory and practical skills test the first time. We utilise a fast-paced and intense approach that helps our students learn and retain effectively. For more information, please contact us at your earliest convenience. A career in lorry driving is waiting for you.


  1. BBC – https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-tees-30625622


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