A 45-year-old mum from Dunstable in Bedfordshire, her two sons and a girl travelling in the same car have been named as the four victims of a multiple car crash involving four lorries and four cars on the A34 in Berkshire.
Tracy Houghton, her two sons Ethan, 13, and Joshua, 11, were named as victims of the horrific crash, along with partner Mark Goldsmith's daughter, 11-year-old Aimee. Mark and his son Jake, 13, were following in another vehicle and witnessed the crash. Mark sustained whiplash injuries and a broken rib. The family were returning from a camping trip.
Speaking to the Oxford Mail Houghton's mother Jo Smith said: "Tracy's partner Mark and his son Jake were in a different car, they were following my daughter. They had to take two cars. They were behind my daughter's car." She said she was behind the lorry and that the car she was driving "got shunted underneath the lorry. "Mark is in bits."
The incident took place on the A34, between Chieveley and East Ilsley, at around 5.10pm GMT on Wednesday (10 August), and caused a six-mile tailback on the busy dual carriageway.
The southbound carriageway had to be closed to allow an air ambulance to land and reportedly remained shut for about five hours. The northbound carriageway reopened at 6.30am on Thursday (11 August). A 30-year-old lorry driver from Andover was arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and has been bailed until 5 October.
In a statement, Thames Valley Police said: "Thames Valley Police is continuing to investigate a fatal collision on the A34 near East Ilsley yesterday (10/8). Officers were called to a report of a collision on the northbound carriageway shortly after 5.10pm between the East Ilsley and West Ilsley junctions. The collision involved four heavy goods vehicles and four cars."
Four people – a 45-year-old woman and three children, an 11-year-old boy, an 11-year-old girl and a 13-year old boy all from Bedfordshire sadly died at the scene. It is believed they were all travelling in the same car.
"South Central Ambulance Service also attended the collision. One man was flown by air ambulance to the John Radcliffe Hospital. He is still in hospital being treated for serious injuries. Two people – a man and a teenage boy were taken to the Royal Berkshire Hospital by land ambulance with minor injuries and have since been discharged. Nine people sustained minor injuries and were treated at the scene."
Police have requested anyone who witnessed the collision or who saw anything they "believe is significant", to contact them by ringing 101 and quoting reference URN 1109 10/8.