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Grieving family of Lancashire road accident victim claim oil spill should have been cleared

The parents of a 21-year-old girl who died in a road accident in July 2009 have said that an oil spill on the road should have been cleared.

Jessica Foxley, her boyfriend Tom Petty and friend Philip Wright all lost their lives in the accident, which occurred when their speeding Ford Focus lost control on a bend on Skipton Old Road in Colne. The car is believed to have been travelling at 72mph, and collided with a dry stone wall after the driver lost control.

It was later found that there was an oil spill on the road the trio were travelling on at the time of the incident. At an inquest recently, it was revealed that the spill was caused by hydraulic fluid leaking from a forage harvester. Although not a large spill in terms of quantity, it was spread over quarter of a mile on the road.

A team of contractors immediately took action to clear up the spill, using sand rather than more conventionally used absorbents or oil spill kits.

However, Ms Foxley’s parents have criticised the quality of the spill control job and the effectiveness of the material chosen to clear up the spill, questioning whether the sand used was enough to fully absorb the fluid.

The grieving couple raised their complaint after coroner Richard Taylor recorded an inquest verdict stating that it was likely to have been a combination of the speed the car was travelling at and the spill on the road that caused the accident.

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