A grieving mother speaks of her heartache after a family friend, who was twice over the drink drive limit, crashed his car killing her teenage daughter.
“If you make a decision to drink and drive it is never an accident, it’s like playing a game of Russian roulette nine times out of ten you will probably get away with it but there is always that one chance that you won’t and it absolutely devastates lives.”
These are the poignant words Karen Marchant wants everyone to hear and for others to act on it if they know someone that drink drives by reporting them to police on 101 or 999 if it’s an immediate threat to life.
“He should never have got in that car, he should never have been allowed to get in that car. If you know somebody that drinks (and drives) then speak up as next time it could be somebody close to you.”
Karen from Surrey, lost her daughter Rebecca, 15, in a drink drive collision in February 2016. Becca, as she was fondly called, had gone to stay with family friends in the New Forest when Karen received a call that would change her life forever.
On hearing her daughter had been killed she says: “I went into complete shock my heart was racing I felt unwell, I’ve never felt those feelings before and basically in that instant my entire world came crashing down.”
Alex McBride, 34 from Hordle, Hampshire, was driving a four minute journey home when he crashed his black E350 Mercedes Sport into a tree killing Becca instantly. Rebecca was the front seat passenger but he also had his own daughter and eight-year-old niece in the back. He ran away from the scene and when arrested a few hours later was twice over the drink drive limit and had traces of cannabis in his system.
Remembering her only daughter, she says: “I have lots of picture that I look at, that’s all I have left of her now and I miss her. I miss her laughter I miss the fun that she was its quite lonely and she was so young and had so much ahead of her and that’s, its just gone…and there is nothing that will ever replace or bring it back.”
Karen’s shares her story as part of the ‘Fatal 4’ campaign by Hampshire and Thames Valley Police to highlight the devastation drink and drug driving causes. Throughout June and early July officers will be running organised drink and drug drive operations as part of their summer anti drink/drug driving campaign.
McBride was sentenced to four years and four months in prison and banned from driving for five years and two months at Bournemouth Crown Court in March 2016.
Watch the Fatal 4 campaign on our website https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLKsYGOxPtYvQgNBgQjBAjv5fmf7X3S_9Q