Failed appeal for jailed 15mph driver after fatal crash
A 73-year-old man who killed a pedestrian while driving at 15mph in Lincoln has lost an appeal against his two-year jail sentence.
Peter Conroy, who is partially sighted, claimed he was wearing the wrong kind of glasses when he hit 93-year-old Audrey Noden and her daughter Margaret Elvidge, 63, at a zebra crossing. Mrs Noden died six weeks later, having suffered a fractured leg and pelvis, while Mrs Elvidge required rods and screws in her back to repair broken vertebrae.
Conroy was given an eye test at the scene, where it was discovered he was unable to accurately read a number plate from more than four metres away. The legal requirement is 20 metres.
He was found to be almost blind in his right eye and short-sighted in his left, as well as being a known glaucoma sufferer with poor peripheral vision. The judge concluded he must have lied to the DVLA about his eyesight in order to obtain an extension to his licence.
Additionally, Conroy had tried to claim that the two women ran out in front of him, but CCTV footage showed this was a lie. He also ignored signals from the driver behind to stop, and was seen driving erratically through the area by other motorists.
Conroy received his sentence in April and was banned from driving for 10 years. The DVLA also revoked his licence. Appeal Court judges ruled the victims were “entirely blameless” and that Conroy’s car was “a lethal weapon” with him behind the wheel.
Speed not the only factor in road accident claims
It is easy to fall into the trap of associating accidents on the road with high speeds. What this case proves is that a motorist can be guilty of causing a collision even if they are driving at a relatively low speed. Sadly, this can sometimes have extremely serious consequences.
While this case was helped by the fact that there was conclusive CCTV evidence available, as well as a queue of witnesses behind the at-fault driver, not every victim will be able to prove their version of events so easily.
What you are able to do in the immediate aftermath of a road accident is crucial. Naturally this will depend on the extent of your injuries, but it is often advantageous to obtain pictorial evidence of the aftermath to support your claim.