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Napping driver holds up emergency services racing to car fire on M25 at Leatherhead
A lorry driver taking a nap on a motorway hard shoulder refused to move his vehicle - even though emergencyso emergency services could reach a burning car this morning.
Firefighters had to get out of their engines to move more than 50 vehicles so they could reach the car on flames between junctions eight and nine - the Leatherhead turn-off - on the M25.
Epsom watch manager Gareth Arnold said the lorry driver refused to move on because a device fitted to the vehicle showed he had driven for the maximum time allowed before taking a rest.
Mr Arnold said: "It caused untold trouble. You endanger personnel by putting us out there, all because this person refuses to move on."
He said the ambulance and fire engines, which were called just after 9am, were delayed by about eight minutes.
He said: "We got away with it this morning but you can’t have delays if people are trapped after an accident."
He said the foreign driver had probably pulled up to sleep in his lorry after misjudging the distance to the nearest service station.
He said: "It is becoming more and more common to see these lorries parked up. It’s something we have got to deal with. "
Two Reigate fire engines, an Epsom engine and a Leatherhead engine were called to tackle the vehicle fire.
A Leatherhead fire station spokesman said by the time they reached it: "The car was virtually burnt out."