A number of vehicles were left with broken windscreens and side windows after rocks were thrown from a motorway bridge over the weekend.
Fortunately, no one was injured as a result of these incidents, but parents are being urged to remind their children how dangerous it is to throw objects from motorway bridges and to know where they are, and who they are with, particularly during school holidays.
Officers were called around 7.10pm on Saturday (10 August), following reports of several incidents of criminal damage being caused to vehicles between junctions 1 and 2 of the M3 in both directions. Around five vehicles, including cars, vans and HGVs had been damaged and left with broken windscreens and side windows. A rock, described as the size of a tennis ball, landed on the passenger seat next to the driver after it shattered the passenger’s side window. Thankfully, there was not a passenger in the car at the time.
Roads policing officers were called back to the M3 again around 4.55pm yesterday (11 August), following further reports of damage being caused.
A car, van, five coaches and an HGV had all had rocks thrown at them, causing dents and smashed glass. This included damage to two coaches carrying England Rugby fans home from the match at Twickenham earlier that day, which were left with smashed windows, and a car left with a shattered windscreen which resulted in sending shards of glass over a young child sat in a child seat in the front of the car.
The three of four suspects believed to be responsible are described as white males, aged 13-16 years old and were wearing white tops. One of them did not have a top on. They were seen standing next to the M3 hard shoulder just south of the Littleton Lane Road bridge.
Inspector Ken Bates from Surrey Police’s Roads Policing Unit, said: “This is an extremely dangerous thing this is to do, and I would urge parents to impress upon their children the recklessness of throwing objects from bridges and to know where their children are and who they are with, particularly during school holidays. This type of incident can, and has, ended in tragedy and I cannot stress how dangerous this is, particularly on the motorways where vehicles are travelling at higher speeds.
“We are concerned that someone will be seriously injured and will be taking measures to deter anyone from doing this as well as dealing robustly with anyone caught doing this.”
Insp Bates continued: “If you see anyone throwing objects from motorway bridges, please note down their description and then get in touch with us as soon as possible. We would also like to hear from anyone with any dashcam footage of the incidents in progress or anyone with any other information.”
If you can help, please call us on 101, quoting reference number PR/P19183019. Alternatively, if you do not wish to leave your name, call the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.