A SURREY police chief has called for a halt to the escalating number of cases of objects being thrown at motorway vehicles.

In the first four months of this year, an average of 26 incidents a month have been reported to the force - twice as high as in any of the last three years.

Chief Inspector Mark Clark, of the strategic roads' unit, said: "This really has to stop now before more people are killed or maimed. I appeal to parents of children who live within easy travelling distance of a motorway, please make sure your children are not participating in such a dangerous activity."

Everyone, he continued, should be made aware of the tremendous dangers being caused to innocent motorists by what some youngsters might regard as a prank. He hoped that the death of lorry driver Michael Little would act as a lesson to those reckless enough to hurl missiles from motorway bridges.

Mr Little died when a brick was hurled through the windscreen of his vehicle on the M3 at Camberley. A police hunt is underway for his killer.

Chief Insp Clark warned that officers were now paying special attention to those areas where offences are most frequent. "Many areas are covered by CCTV cameras and we will use this to support prosecutions for endangering life," he added.

"I warn both parents and their children who engage in this activity that prosecution for this very serious offence will always be our objective."

He spoke out after a car windscreen was smashed by a brick as a man drove along the M25 towards Merstham, Surrey. The male driver, who was unhurt, used his mobile phone to alert police.

Officers were appalled to discover that the culprits, who were caught on camera, were two girls aged nine.

Because they are below the age of criminal responsibility they cannot be prosecuted.