TRIBUTE: Man who died in the A27 collision was the ‘best dad in the world’, say grieving family

Steven Copping SUS-151003-142954001

Steven Copping SUS-151003-142954001

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A grieving family have paid tribute to the man who died in a collision involving four vehicles on the A27 near Polegate as the ‘best dad in the world’.

Steven Copping, 49, from Hildenborough, Kent, died at the scene of the smash, on March 5.

He was funny, friendly and selfless with a massive heart

His black Volvo V60 was crushed by a 41-tonne Renault articulated lorry which overturned.

Mr Copping’s family said, “Steve was the best dad in the world and a devoted loving husband. He was funny, friendly and selfless with a massive heart. He was loved by everyone who crossed his path.

“He will be sadly missed by those he loved and those who loved him. We feel blessed to have had him in our lives for as long as we did. He will never be forgotten. He was our everything.”

The incident happened between Polegate and Lewes, near the junction with Folkington Lane, at about 11.30am. The lorry was travelling west when it overturned, trapping Mr Copping’s car.

A red and white Iveco lorry travelling east ahead of the Volvo took evasive action but its load of scaffolding struck a Volkswagen Transporter people carrier travelling west behind the articulated lorry.

Police are appealing for witnesses to the collision. The driver of the articulated lorry, a 53-year-old man from Wiltshire, suffered slight injuries. He was treated at Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton but not detained.

The driver of the scaffolding lorry, a 45-year-old Eastbourne man, and the driver of the VW Transporter, a 46-year-old woman from Wadhurst, were unhurt.

Two passengers in the VW, a 39-year-old woman from Norway and a 27-year-old man from the USA, were also unhurt.

The incident led to the A27 being closed between Polegate and the Drusillas roundabout at Alfriston until shortly before midnight.

A 53-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving. He was since been released on bail until May 27.

Sergeant Dan Pitcher said, “We still need to hear from witnesses, particularly the driver of the white Ford transit connect van that would have seen the collision but turned around before police arrived at the scene.”

Anyone with information should email collision.appeal@sussex.pnn.police.uk or call 101 quoting Operation Bourton.