Home Secretary Theresa May yesterday joined those who paid tribute to a West Yorkshire policeman killed on the M1 after being struck by a lorry as he tried to help a stranded motorist.
Pc Mark Goodlad, 41, was killed when he was hit by a lorry while helping a woman whose car had broken down on the hard shoulder of the M1, near Wakefield, on Monday afternoon.
The Home Secretary said: “Pc Goodlad died while putting his own safety at risk to help protect a member of the public and his sacrifice stands as an example of the bravery police officers display every day to keep us all safe.”
West Yorkshire’s Chief Constable, Sir Norman Bettison, has also paid tribute to the officer, saying he had made the “ultimate sacrifice” as he went to help a vulnerable motorist in the “dangerous environment of the motorway”.
“Mark paid the ultimate sacrifice and we are all proud of him and are saddened by his loss,” he said.
“Our thoughts and sympathy are with Mark’s family. We shall try to be there for them as Mark was there for the public at large.”
The driver of the lorry, a 44-year-old Oldham man, was yesterday still being questioned on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving.
The accident happened on the southbound carriageway of the M1 just after Junction 39 at 4.15pm when an orange Scania articulated heavy goods vehicle was in collision with a marked BMW X5 police vehicle and a grey Suzuki Swift.
At the time of the collision the police BMW and the Suzuki were both stationary on the hard shoulder. Pc Goodlad was between the two vehicles, assisting the 51-year-old woman driving the Suzuki, as she had a problem with her car. She suffered minor injuries.
Chief Inspector Neil Hunter said: “This is a serious incident where one person has lost his life and another person has been injured.
“It is vitally important that we establish the full circumstances and I would encourage anyone who can assist our inquiries to come forward as soon as possible.”
The officer, from East Yorkshire, was married with one child and had been in the police for 10 years.
West Yorkshire Police asked anyone who may have witnessed the incident to contact the major collision enquiry team on 01924 334693.