Taxi driver awaits police decision

A TAXI driver could face prosecution after his parked vehicle ran away and smashed into a pensioner, leaving her with serious leg injuries.Police are investigating to see if the vehicle had been left parked properly in Hamilton Road, Felixstowe, with its handbrake on, or not.

A TAXI driver could face prosecution after his parked vehicle ran away and smashed into a pensioner, leaving her with serious leg injuries.

Police are investigating to see if the vehicle had been left parked properly in Hamilton Road, Felixstowe, with its handbrake on, or not.

If they find the handbrake had not been pulled properly into place driver Ron Grant could face charges for not leaving his cab safe and secure.

A 63-year-old woman walking on the pavement at the top of Bent Hill, Felixstowe, was crushed against a wall by Mr Grant's green Vauxhall Vectra Elite.


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She was taken to Ipswich Hospital suffering suspected fractured legs and a broken ankle.

Her condition is described as “stable” though she is expected to remain in hospital for a while yet.

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A police spokeswoman said investigations into the accident were continuing.

“There will be a full investigation with the first task a detailed vehicle examination to see if there was anything wrong with the car,” she said.

“Officers will be looking carefully at whether there were any problems with the car to establish how the accident happened before consideration can be given over whether any action needs to be taken against the driver.”

Mr Grant, 66, a taxi driver for 23 years, had parked his vehicle outside Coastal Taxis while he picked up details of his work shifts.

He is adamant that he put the handbrake on.

“I switched off the car, pulled on my handbrake, put on my hazard lights and locked the car - that's what I always do, it's my habit,” he said.

He had only bought the car a week before the accident last Thursday and it had undergone the Hackney Carriage licence inspection to make sure it was safe and roadworthy.

Vauxhall has acknowledged that there have been several “roll-away” incidents with its cars.

Some 270,000 owners of Vectra and Signum cars have been issued with a handbrake warning label, following a number of complaints from owners that their handbrakes were not secure.

The company has said it believes the handbrake system is safe. Its engineers have looked into the issue thoroughly and tested the mechanisms on cars with alleged problems but have not been able to find a fault. They are still examining a number of theories.

What do you think? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk

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