A lorry driver who crashed into the back of a Caterpillar digger, killing the driver, after he was potentially distracted by a text message has been jailed for five years.
Malcolm Hylands, 51, was driving a Scania HGV on the eastbound A421 near Bedford when it struck the digger being driven by 66-year-old David Simpson from Blunham.
Hylands was jailed for a total of five years at Luton Crown Court on Friday, January 30, and banned from driving for three.
The court heard there was evidence he had received a text moments before the collision on May 7 last year.
He denied causing death by dangerous driving but was convicted following a trial.
PC Gareth Rees said: “This case is an example of just how dangerous using a handheld mobile phone while behind the wheel can be.
“While only Malcolm Hylands knows whether he was using the phone when the crash happened, what is clear is he crashed into a large digger while travelling along a straight road in good conditions and, if he had been full concentrating, would have had plenty of time to see what was ahead.
“Whatever distracted him has ended with the death of a man, his life in ruins and has deeply affected the lives of many others.
“There can be no call or message that is so important that it is worth risking such devastating consequences.”