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24/10/2021

Two women, 81 and 66, fined in Naas court over four car pile-up near Ballymore

Accident

Ballymore Eustace — from a Naas perspective

The mishap occurred near Ballymore Eustace

A collision involving four vehicles near Ballymore Eustace resulted in an 81 year old woman being convicted for careless driving at Naas District Court on October 6.

The court heard that emergency services personnel attended the scene of the incident at Horsepasstown, on the Blessington to Hollywood road.

Hilary McCullagh, 81, whose address was given as Rathvarrin, Tullow, and Mary Mahon, 66, whose address was given as Aylmerstown, Castledermot, were prosecuted for careless driving on March 31, 2018.

The court heard that Ms McCullagh had no recollection of the accident and was seriously injured breaking part of her neck, four ribs and she suffered severe concussion.
The defendants were driving the third and fourth cars respectively.

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In all, four cars were damaged.
Andrew O’Brien said he was slowed and stopped behind a jeep which had indicated to turn right off the road on the approach to Blessington.

He said he could see the car behind do the same and he then got a bump.
Kevin Whitfield, driver of the second vehicle, said he too saw a vehicle preparing to turn right and said a car had stopped in front of him.

He added that when he stopped he was hit from behind.
He said he got a hit a second time and was impacted twice.

Under cross examination Mr Whitfield denied that his evidence was self serving because he is pursuing a claim and he said he had his brakes on.

Ms McCullagh and Ms Mahon were driving the third and fourth vehicles respectively, the court heard.
Barrister Richard Wixted contended there was no evidence to suggest Ms Mahon was driving carelessly and said the fact that there was damage to the right side of her car indicated she had taken evasive action.

He said there was no screeching of brakes and Ms Mahon did the best she could to avoid the incident and caused minimal damage.
Barrister Aisling Murphy, for Ms McCullagh, said the State had not proven its case and at no point had anyone given evidence about the manner of driving.
Ms Murphy said the evidence was not indicative of careless driving.
However Inspector Tony Connaughton told the court that the incident happened because a vehicle stopped, two cars took action to avoid it and two others did not.
Judge Desmond Zaidan said a car stopped to turn right and the first and second car were blameless.
“The court is entitled to bring reality to the situation and to draw reasonable inferences,” he said, adding the accident was caused by them not keeping a safe distance and a proper look out.
He said he had no doubt that the defendants are decent people and he fined them €350 each.

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