Steeton hero trucker dragged man from blazing truck

Specialist HGV driver Mark Hancock from Steeton near Keighley, works for Collett a heavy haulage specialist from Halifax but with a big depot in Goole in East Yorkshire, Mark, who works out of the Goole depot during the week had left in the afternoon tr

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Specialist HGV driver Mark Hancock from Steeton near Keighley, works for Collett a heavy haulage specialist from Halifax but with a big depot in Goole in East Yorkshire, Mark, who works out of the Goole depot during the week had left in the afternoon tr

Specialist HGV driver Mark Hancock from Steeton near Keighley, works for Collett a heavy haulage specialist from Halifax but with a big depot in Goole in East Yorkshire, Mark, who works out of the Goole depot during the week had left in the afternoon tr

First published in News
Last updated

A trucker who dragged a fellow lorry driver from his burning cab has told of the moment he sprang into action on a motorway.

Mark Hancock, from Steeton, saw a plume of black smoke pouring from an articulated lorry which had careered off the carriageway and down a steep embankment near the junction of M62 and M180 motorways in East Yorkshire.

With the driver was still inside, the cab came to a rest just feet from a canal and the cargo of fertiliser erupted into an intense fire.

Despite the risk, Mr Hancock led rescue efforts and helped to haul the injured driver through a window as part of the cargo exploded just feet away.

Other motorists then carried the man away to safety.

Mr Hancock, who works for Halifax heavy haulage firm Collett, said: “As I came off the M62 I could see a cloud of black smoke. I stopped my vehicle and looked down. I couldn’t believe what I saw.

“Everything was on fire except the cab which was detached. I thought no way was anyone going to survive that but then suddenly I saw a hand come out of the window.

“I rushed across the motorway and down the embankment. I saw the driver – he was lying across the cab. He was shouting at me, ‘Get me out of here, get me out of here’. I think he could feel the heat,

“He was a really big bloke. I couldn’t have moved him on my own so I was fortunate I was soon joined by two more chaps.”

A group of five rescuers eventually hauled the driver clear of the cab and moved him away from danger. It is believed he escaped with a broken shoulder and cuts and bruises.

Mr Hancock’s boss, Phil Sutcliffe, praised his actions.

He said: “He’s one of our top drivers. He’s a great ambassador for our company. It’s tremendous what he’s done. He’s a very quiet and reserved individual. We're very proud of him and he deserves some recognition.”

It is believed the crash on May 8 was caused by a blow out on one of the lorry tyres and resulted in massive traffic disruption.

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