Milkman cleared of dangerous driving

A MILKMAN who caused the death of a father-of-one when he failed to stop at a junction during his early-morning round has been found not guilty of dangerous driving.

A MILKMAN who caused the death of a father-of-one when he failed to stop at a junction during his early-morning round has been found not guilty of dangerous driving.

But the jury hearing the case at Ipswich Crown Court yesterday agreed that Michael Smith, from Pulham Market near Diss, was guilty of the lesser charge of careless driving.

Smith, 40, had been carrying out his deliveries in Livermere Road, Great Barton, in October last year when he overshot the junction with Mill Road and collided into a Saab being driven by Paul Cundill.

The 34-year-old was taken to Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge suffering from serious head injuries, but died six days later.

Smith, whose wife is the licensee of the Falcon Inn in Pulham Market, told the court he had no explanation for why he overshot the junction, but said he felt “terrible” about what had happened.

“I think about it every day,” he said. “I never thought anything like that would happen to me and I do not understand why it happened.

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“I do not know why I did not stop, I just lost my bearings and that is all I know. I just feel awful.”

The court heard how Smith, who became a milkman four-years-ago, had an exemplary driving record. On the day of the tragedy, he was making a round that he had been doing for between four and six weeks, which took him from his employer's depot in Diss, to Bury St Edmunds, and on to Great Barton.

After hearing the verdict, Judge Neil McKittrick adjourned the case until later this month for a report on Smith's financial situation, but warned Smith he was considering disqualifying him from driving.