No ill will from victim after tractor incident

Tractor driver Scott Beckingsale (29) fractured the neck of a woman crossing Gordon Rd. PHOTO:...
Tractor driver Scott Beckingsale (29) fractured the neck of a woman crossing Gordon Rd. PHOTO: STEPHEN JAQUIERY
A woman whose neck was fractured after a tractor ploughed into her on a pedestrian crossing says she bears the driver no ill will.

The 50-year-old was crossing Gordon Rd in Mosgiel on the morning of May 2 when she was struck.

But in a statement before the Dunedin District Court yesterday she said she felt no anger towards the driver, 29-year-old Scott Charles Beckingsale.

The court heard the defendant had pleaded guilty soon after being charged with careless driving causing injury and had expressed his remorse by sending the victim chocolates, flowers and a card as she recovered in hospital.

Farm machinery salesman Beckingsale had been driving the John Deere tractor through Mosgiel.

He had travelled through a green light and approached the pedestrian crossing with the vehicle's bucket 1.2m off the ground.

A car heading in the opposite direction stopped to let the victim cross the road and she was halfway across when the bucket smashed into her neck.

Beckingsale had not seen her.

He stopped immediately and an ambulance was called.

Police on the scene said the defendant was clearly remorseful and visibly concerned for the victim's welfare.

She spent several days in hospital with a break to her C2 vertebrae and court documents said she was in a neck brace for months.

Duty lawyer Ann Leonard stressed Beckingsale was travelling slowly at the time and slammed on the brakes as soon as he was aware of the collision.

Community magistrate Simon Heale acknowledged there was nothing malicious or reckless about the incident.

"Significant consequences can be caused by good people intending no harm. That's what happened here," he said.

Mr Heale ordered Beckingsale to pay the victim $1500 and banned him from driving for six months.

Comments

Talk about judicial inconsistency — on the same day another Dunedin driver is fined $5057 for breaking the *ankle* of a lime scooter rider who was (illegally) on a pedestrian crossing.

It would appear that scooter riders are considered many times more important than pedestrians.

How is it that farm machinery uses Gordon Road? If there's no other road than the main street, built up shopping centre, they should make one.

 

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