An 11-year-old boy named Alfie Aiello-Da Cruz was tragically killed in a car accident when his father crashed into a motorway barrier on their way home from church. The incident occurred on Boxing Day in 2021 as the family was driving from Basingstoke to their home in Fair Oak, Hampshire. The car, a red Nissan Qashqai, veered off the road and rolled over after hitting the barrier at Junction 11 of the M3.
Alfie, who was seated in the backseat and wearing a seatbelt, was ejected through a window and suffered a fatal blow to the head, resulting in instant death. The rest of the family, including Alfie's mother Anna Aiello, father Marco Da Cruz, and younger sister Chloe Aiello Da Cruz, also sustained injuries, although less severe. Investigations revealed that the accident was caused by a late manoeuvre by Mr Da Cruz and poor road conditions due to fog. The fog may have affected Mr Da Cruz's distance perception, causing him to misjudge the junction. However, no defects were found in the vehicle.
PC Robert Giles, a crash investigator, stated that the car hit the grass verge before launching into the air and rolling. The foggy conditions likely played a role in the tragic accident. During the inquest at Winchester Coroners' Court, it was determined that Alfie's death was instantaneous and his suffering would have been limited. His father, deeply impacted by the loss, cannot recall the specifics of the accident. The coroner, Rosamund Rhodes-Kemp, concluded that the cause of death was a road traffic collision and expressed condolences to the devastated family.
Alfie's parents attended the inquest, and the coroner acknowledged the profound psychiatric impact the loss had on them. In a statement, the family described Alfie as a source of brightness, joy, love, and happiness in their lives. They expressed the pain of losing him at such a young age and vowed to cherish his memory forever. They expressed hope for a reunion in heaven and a last hug with their beloved son. Alfie's death reminds us of the fragility of life and the devastating consequences of car accidents. It serves as a heartbreaking reminder to prioritize safety and responsible driving to prevent such tragedies from occurring.