A pedestrian struck by a car on a motorway died in a tragic accident, a coroner has ruled.
Craig Robinson, 31, was hit by a Ford Focus in lane one of the M6, near junction 29 at Bamber Bridge, in the early hours of February 4 this year.
Mr Robinson was walking home to Clayton-le-Woods after a night out in Preston when the collision happened at about 4am.
Preston Coroners’ Court heard Mr Robinson may have been trying to cross the southbound carriageway when the accident happened.
Mr Robinson’s friend Trevor Hodgett told the inquest the pair had enjoyed a few drinks at two bars in Preston that night, before Mr Hodgett decided to catch a bus home about 11.30pm.
He said: “I said to Craig to come with me but he said no.
“He took me to the bus stop but then wandered back off into Preston. It wasn’t unusual for him to be out on his own.
“I texted him when I went to bed, to tell him to let me know he was okay.
“He texted about 12.30am and said he was still in Preston.”
Michael Chase told the inquest he was driving home from work when Mr Robinson, dressed in dark clothes, suddenly appeared in front of his car on the M6. He swerved and braked but could not avoid a collision. Mr Chase dialled 999 but Mr Robinson was pronounced dead at the scene.
The inquest heard that several street lights on that section of the motorway were not working at the time of the collision.
Deputy coroner Simon Jones recorded a verdict of accidental death from multiple injuries. He said he would write to the Highways Agency and contractors A1 Plus with concerns about lighting inspection records.
Mr Jones said: “Craig was on the motorway and should not have been. There are any number of reasons why. He may have been confused as to where he was; he may have been crossing.”
Mr Robinson’s mum Shirley Dewhurst hugged Mr Chase during a break in the inquest and told him he was not to blame for the accident.
Speaking after the inquest, she said: “Craig was a special son. Everyone loved and respected him. He will be deeply missed by everyone.”