FIREFIGHTERS cut free victims of a simulated multi-car motorway pile-up.

The exercise saw up to 45 firefighters from two counties join police officers and council emergency staff on the test track at Honda’s South Marston factory.

Four people were said to have died in the mocked-up crash, involving a lorry and around a dozen brand-new Honda cars. And there were even more walking wounded, dressed up with bloodied scars by talented Wiltshire make-up artists.

PCSOs helped with traffic control, a police drone team joined a fire service drone as 999 crews’ eyes in the sky and emergency officers from the council tested their policies on how to deal with M4 tailbacks of up to 20 miles.

Glyn Moody, group manager for Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service, said the exercise was a good opportunity for his firefighters to practice their skills on new cars.

“Quite often, the only time our guys get to work on new vehicles is in real life scenarios,” he said.

“Here, we get the chance to use new techniques. With new vehicles you have different ways of removing things like the doors and vehicle sides.”

Honda has previously donated its Civic cars and time on its Swindon race track to help emergency crews prepare for real-life crashes.

But that stands to end in 2021, when the Japanese car giant shuts its South Marston plant.

Mr Moody said: “It’s a real shame. With Honda going, we’re going to lose that facility.”