Officer died seconds from safety

AN Ipswich police officer killed while responding to an emergency call was within ten seconds of being stood down.Pc Cheryl Lloyd, 42, died instantly when the marked police car she was driving spun out of control in West End Road, Ipswich, and crashed into a stationary lorry.

AN Ipswich police officer killed while responding to an emergency call was within ten seconds of being stood down.

Pc Cheryl Lloyd, 42, died instantly when the marked police car she was driving spun out of control in West End Road, Ipswich, and crashed into a stationary lorry.

Police estimated her car was travelling somewhere between 69mph and 84mph at the time.

But the inquest into her death, held at Ipswich Crown Court yesterday, heard a call was made moments after the crash to say her assistance was not required.

Greater Suffolk coroner Peter Dean said: “It maybe adds to the tragedy that within ten seconds of the impact, a call went out to stand down. At the time of the impact, this was a lawful and appropriate response to a call for police assistance.”

Jurors returned a verdict of accidental death in relation to the crash, which happened about 8pm on June 18.

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Pc Lloyd and her colleague Pc Chris Neale, were responding to a call for assistance.

The inquest heard Pc Lloyd, a police-trained advanced driver, lost control of her vehicle on a bend in West End Road as she travelled towards Yarmouth Road.

As reported in later editions of yesterday's Evening Star, witnesses reported hearing the vehicle make screeching sounds and skidding in an anti-clockwise direction before hitting the parked lorry.

Checks carried out after the crash found there were no faults with the car.

Sergeant Steven Knight, who investigated the crash, said driving conditions were fine and there were no problems with the road surface. He added Pc Lloyd, who died from head injuries, was driving in accordance with her police training.

Pc Phil Payne said the car was travelling between 69 and 84mph at the time of crash. The road's speed limit is 30mph.

After the inquest, Miss Lloyd's sister, Sue Brace, of Felixstowe, said: “Cheryl was a good police officer who loved her job and was greatly respected. We are all very proud of her.

“Cheryl has left a huge hole in our lives that will never be filled. Her family, friends and colleagues all miss her terribly.

“My family would like to thank all the emergency services for all they did to help Cheryl and Chris. A special thought goes to Pc Chris Neale and his family.”

Pc Neale has returned to work at Ipswich police station on recuperative duties after sustaining serious head injuries in the crash.

N If you knew Pc Lloyd and would like to pay tribute? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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