A police officer called to a fatal crash on the M1 in Buckinghamshire had to make his way to the scene on foot due to the amount of traffic caused by the incident. The collision, which took place on August 9, 2021, saw two young children killed on the motorway.

10-year-old Smaller McCann and four-year-old Lilly McCann sustained fatal injuries and died at the scene near Milton Keynes after their mother, Mary McCann, crashed into a lorry while drink-driving.

The incident caused severe tailbacks , meaning the two officers called out to the scene faced delays in arriving. However, PC Matt Diduca refused to let this deter him from responding and made his way on foot.

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Upon arrival, PC Diduca found the two children who had suffered serious injuries that later proved to be fatal. He took control of their distraught mother and completed a scene assessment.

PC Colin Riley then arrived at the scene and the pair had to deal with scene management alone until further support was able to arrive half an hour later. The two officers have now been honoured for their work at an awards ceremony.

Mary McCann
Mary McCann

Sergeant Daniel Collett, of the Joint Roads Policing Unit , based at Milton Keynes police station, nominated the pair for the award. He said: “This was an extremely upsetting and emotionally charged collision for all involved.

“The actions of both PC Diduca and PC Riley in dealing with the initial scene and grief-stricken mother were of the highest standard.” Mary McCann, 35, from Derby, was sentenced to four years and one month in prison and banned from driving for seven years and two weeks for two counts of causing death by careless driving whilst under the influence of alcohol.

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