Case Study

84-yr-old with 'poor eyesight' fined £95 for seriously injuring a cyclist

Incident date: 
Sun, 6 May 2012

John Drake, 53, had his back broken in four places and was left with a brain injury, a fractured skull and a broken nose after he was hit by 84-year-old Ronald Finney in Darwen Road, Bromley Cross, Bolton. He turned across the path of Drake, who was left with 30 other broken bones.

Finney’s eyesight was recorded by police to be below standard – he could only read a number plate from 18.6m, rather than the required 20.5m.

Magistrates did not award compensation to Drake and only gave Finney a small fine and 6 points on his licence, despite his inadequate eyesight.

CTC's view: 

This is the sort of case where a charge of ‘dangerous’ driving is required. However, even with a ‘careless’ driving charge, a much stronger penalty could have been applied, and the magistrates should have suspended Finney’s licence indefinitely.

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