A driver who was speeding in his new BMW hit and killed a father of two.
The driver admitted to causing the death of a cyclist by dangerous driving. The cyclist had been cycling on the pavement but changed direction and rode across the road, straight into the path of the BMW.
The speed of the BMW was such that the driver could not stop. It had just entered a 30 mph zone but at the time of the collision its speed was noted at 54 to 57 mph.
The cyclist suffered head injuries and attempts were made to resuscitate him, but he died shortly after arriving at hospital. The cause of death was a massive skull fracture.
The BMW driver remained at the scene and claimed that he had been driving at only 30 to 35mph. He said that, before he knew it, the cyclist pulled into the road giving him no braking time. The cyclist had not looked over his shoulder before moving out.
At court, the driver readily acknowledged the seismic effect that his actions had on the cyclists family, saying it was something that will live with him for the rest of his life.
He had the grace to plead guilty in advance of the trial day to negate the painful experience for the family of having to go through that process.
"There is genuine regret and remorse in his family for the effect of his actions. It's something that he lives with every day. " His lawyer said.
He was described as a good and hard-working man who usually puts others first, and had no previous convictions.
The lawyer continued "It was an isolated moment of madness. It was an utterly reckless and foolish thing to do. He has an unblemished driving record."
"It's a relatively short distance that was travelled at that speed – 200 metres. The primary issue here is his speed. Had the cyclist looked and seen the car, the accident would not have happened."
"He did not seek to flee. He went to the aid of the cyclist. He can't undo what he has done. All he can do is say sorry. It's just full of pain and loss in these cases. It's horrible."
The Trial Judge in summing up agreed; "You are a decent family man, working hard and with many friends and supporters."
"The cyclist crossed your path and it's clear that he didn't look, but the fact of the matter is that your excessive speed was the major cause of this accident."
The driver received a four-year jail sentence and a four-year driving ban, after which he must pass a new test to drive. His BMW was confiscated.
Just to remind you why we in Curry Rivel have Speedwatch in the village – not to spoil the fun of a reckless few, but to protect the many. Two lives here have been changed forever. You may argue it was a cyclist at fault, or a pedestrian that didn't look. But this ruling demonstrates that once you are found to have been speeding and as a consequence are unable to properly read or react to a situation, the buck stops with you.
The highest recorded speed leaving Curry Rivel was 84 mph in a 30 mph zone! There will undoubtedly be some idiots who think that's clever.