The M40 motorway was closed after a lorry jack-knifed and several dogs escaped from a motorhome following a crash.

Several dogs escaped onto a motorway after a motorhome broken down on the hardshoulder was hit by a lorry. The incident on the M40 northbound carriageway, near Banbury, Oxfordshire, saw all three lanes of the carriageway being shut for most of Saturday from 5.40am as the lorry jack-knifed. Southbound traffic was also disrupted after several dogs escaped from the wreckage. The motorhome contained 12 dogs and three people.

The people inside the motorhome were left injured by the crash, with one suffering a broken leg. Inspector Helen Thomas, of West Mercia Police, said: “A call was received at 5.40am reporting a collision on the M40 motorway northbound between junctions 11 and 12. A heavy goods vehicle collided with a motorhome which was stationary on the hard shoulder while it was awaiting recovery. It contained three people and 12 dogs. The HGV jack-knifed blocking all three lanes of the carriageway. A full closure from junction 11 northbound followed and ambulance, fire brigade and highways attended. A number of the dogs escaped from the vehicle and ran off causing problems on the southbound carriageway. Three people suffered injuries; two minor and a third sustaining a broken leg.”

The northbound carriageway was expected to remain closed until Saturday afternoon.

One of the dogs – a male black and white Cardigan Corgi – was initially unaccounted for but was traced safe and well by the owners some hours after the crash, following an appeal on social media sites. The condition of the remaining dogs is not known.

Sources: Press Association The Daily Telegraph.

Note by Christopher Macgowan: Obviously I only know as much about this incident as is reported in this story but, once again, I am reminded what a dangerous place the hard shoulder is and how very much worse this could have been. If we break down on the motorway it is essential to safely get over the barrier and out of harms way. I am speculating here but I imagine the occupants were uncertain to know what to do for the best with twelve dogs on board and in light of their dreadful experience – having twelve loose dogs on board perhaps was not a good plan.

Christopher Macgowan