Dangerous driving charge

An Offaly man appeared at Naas District Court on Wednesday, May 23, charged with dangerous driving after he was involved in a crash on the N7 at Kill West on November 24 last.

An Offaly man appeared at Naas District Court on Wednesday, May 23, charged with dangerous driving after he was involved in a crash on the N7 at Kill West on November 24 last.

On the day in question, Kieran Patrick Clemens whose address is listed as The Slieve Bloom, Main Street, Kinnity, Offaly was travelling along that road when he hit a spot of water in his blue Ford Mondeo and aquaplaned across the puddle in the road, losing control.

His car hit off a barrier and then collided with the tractor unit of an articulated lorry.

His car was written off and the steering mechanism of the lorry was damaged.

Acting for him, Conal Boyce noted that the place of the accident is a spot on the dual carriageway that is liable to flooding, “so much so that Kildare Council has now put up a sign warning of that very hazard”.

The defendant explained how he was overtaking the truck on the motorway when he suddenly encountered what he called “an enormous puddle of water, bigger than I’ve ever seen on the motorway before. “I lost control.”

When asked, he said he doubted he was even going at 100kph.

He had bought the car a few days previously. It was in very good condition except for a bald tyre at the back, which, Mr Boyce noted, was probably the main reason for the crash.

There was a sad element to the story in that he had lost his father in similar circumstances, less than six miles away from the same spot.

He had one previous conviction, for drink driving, dating back some years previously. “I haven’t had a drink in seven years,” he said. He was fined E750.