Hilary Meredith Solicitors backs call for introduction of new offence of causing serious injury by careless driving

Hilary Meredith Solicitors has backed calls for tougher sentences for those who drive irresponsibly and devastate lives – including the introduction of a new offence of causing serious injury by careless driving, punishable by imprisonment.

The firm is currently acting for Georgia Addy who suffered severe head injuries when she was struck by a car as she walked home from school in Burscough, Lancashire, last September. The schoolgirl was airlifted to Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool where she spent three months recovering from her injuries.

Lee Griffiths, 29, from Maghull, Merseyside, pleaded guilty to driving without due care and attention and was sentenced at Preston crown court on 30 August.

He was banned for a year, fined £500 with £250 costs. Georgia’s stepdad, Stephen Addy, labelled the sentence “an insult to Georgia and totally inadequate”.

Dianne Yates, partner at Hilary Meredith Solicitors, is acting for Georgia and agrees with Mr. Addy.

“Georgia sustained horrific injuries, life-changing injuries through absolutely no fault of her own,” said Dianne.

“After determined lobbying and a campaign supported by Stephen Addy, the Ministry of Justice has now said it will introduce a new offence of causing serious injury by careless driving, punishable by imprisonment, to fill a gap in the law and reflect the seriousness of some of the injuries suffered by victims in this category of case. We are now calling on the MoJ to fulfil its promise and let us know exactly when this new offence will be introduced. It is too important to put on the backburner.”

Hilary Meredith, Chair at Hilary Meredith Solicitors also backed the campaign.
“I’ve long supported tougher sentences for those who drive irresponsibly and devastate lives,” said Hilary.
“We see the impact of dangerous driving every day with our clients sustaining life changing injuries.
“Being involved in a car accident can be not only emotionally scarring and frightening, it can also lead to long-lasting physical pain and disability.
“This type of injury can tear your spinal cord inhibiting the ability of the cord to relay messages to areas beyond the injury site. This can result in partial or complete paralysis.

“Another serious yet common type of injury sustained in car accidents is a head injury caused by either a blow to the head or the trauma of the brain hitting the inside of the skull due to rapid acceleration or deceleration. Head injuries can range from mild concussions to severe traumatic brain injury that could lead to a serious and permanent disability.

“We have a duty to make our roads safer for everyone – drivers, cyclists and pedestrians. This legislation is long overdue.”