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M5 death crash lorry driver named

The driver of a lorry that crashed into the back of a stationary bus carrying a party of fruit-packers on the M5 has been named.

William Mapstone, 65, from Wells in Somerset, died shortly after 9pm on Saturday at a Birmingham hospital following the accident which left one bus passenger dead and another critically ill.

The bus passenger has also been named as father-of-three Liaquat Ali, 35, from Smethwick.

Mr Ali was confirmed dead at the scene of the crash, which happened in the early hours of Saturday when the lorry collided with the single-decker bus near junction three of the M5 at Halesowen.

The driver of the bus, which was reported to have broken down amid thick fog in a "live" lane of the M5 near Frankley Services, remains on bail after being arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving following the crash, West Midlands Police said.

Mr Mapstone was en route from Manchester to Devon when his Volvo vehicle struck the single-decker bus, said the force. The force has confirmed the bus was carrying a party of fruit-packers.

The lorry driver's family paid tribute to him in a statement released by the force. They said: "Our dad was tragically taken away from us while doing the job he so very much loved. We would very much like to thank the people who helped both us and Dad through such a tragic time, including all the emergency services that attended the scene to help Dad on the motorway to try and save him."

Mr Ali's family paid tribute to "a loving husband" and father. They said: "Liaquat was the loving husband of Fozia Shaheen and was the father of two sons and a daughter - Shafqat Ali, aged nine, Mohammed Owais Ali, aged two, and Kashish Eman, aged six. He will be dearly missed by his family and friends and also leaves behind three brothers."

Both families are being supported by family liaison officers and have asked that they are given privacy to deal with their loss, West Midlands Police said.

The driver of the bus, a 49-year-old Birmingham man who has not been named, remains on bail in connection with the incident. No one has been charged with any offences at this stage, a force spokesman said. A 28-year-old man from Smethwick, who was also a passenger on the bus, remains in a critical condition in hospital, the spokesman added.


From Belfast Telegraph