Recovery firm pays tribute to driver killed in A303 triple fatal crash as police confirm Portsmouth woman in her 20s among victims

TRIBUTES have been paid to a vehicle recovery worker who was killed in a fatal crash that claimed the lives of two other people.

By Ben Fishwick
Tuesday, 31st August 2021, 3:02 pm
Tom Watson, who worked for Portsmouth-based RD Avery, died on the A303 near Andover. Picture: RD Avery
Tom Watson, who worked for Portsmouth-based RD Avery, died on the A303 near Andover. Picture: RD Avery

Married Tom Watson, 30, was killed in a crash while on duty working out of the Portsmouth depot of specialist roadside recovery firm RD Avery Ltd.

A Portsmouth woman in her 20s is among the dead in the four-vehicle crash on the A303 near Andover, alongside a Southampton woman in her 50s, police said.

Officers arrested a HGV driver, 38, from Donnington, in Shropshire, on suspicion of drug-driving and causing death by dangerous driving.

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Mr Watson’s death on August 25 has left his colleagues ‘devastated’ and mourning the loss of a ‘truly exceptional person’.

In a statement, the Anchorage Park-based company’s managing director Cassie Salisbury said: ‘It is with utmost sadness that we confirm the tragic loss of a staff member whilst on duty...

‘Tom was a highly valued colleague and friend and brought a smile and sunshine to everyone he met.

‘He loved his job and helping people and was a truly exceptional person.

‘It was an honour to have known him and have had him as part of the Avery family.

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‘Needless to say, the entire team are devastated but our immediate thoughts are with his wife and family and all those directly affected by the incident.

‘Thank you to so many of you who have already expressed your support – customers and industry partners alike – it truly is appreciated and means a lot.

‘Tom will be sorely missed but will always be remembered. Rest in Peace Tom.’

As reported, police were called to the A303 at around 8.40am after a crash involving a Vauxhall Astra, a HGV, Mercedes food delivery van and a DAF recovery truck.

The three fatally injured were pronounced dead at the scene, and were from separate vehicles.

A Hampshire police spokesman today said: ‘Enquiries are ongoing, the man arrested has been released under investigation.’

Senior Investigating officer Det Con Cate Paling wants to identify the driver of small white car with a black roof who passed the crash scene.

‘We believe they may be an important witness who we wish to speak with,’ she said.

Anyone with information should call 101, quoting 44210338980.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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