Car accident claim leads to £178k in damages for family

After a fatal car accident claim took the life of a driving teacher, his grieving family has been awarded a £178,357 personal injury compensation award.

Mr Alan Underwood was killed when an LGV neglected to carry out an emergency stop at the A5 Truck Stop near Northampton in Crick.  He was teaching a trainee lorry driver at the time of the incident.

The 48 year old driving instructor was teaching Corinne Radburn the proper technique for safely completing an emergency stopping manoeuvre in March of 2008.  However the training lorry was unable to stop, and Mr Underwood could not remove himself from the its path in time.  As a result the lorry struck him whilst traveling at 20 miles per hour.

During a court hearing the judge called Mr Underwood conscientious but someone who misplaced his faith in the drier of the training lorry.  The judge further commented that Mr Underwood had taken a risk by allowing someone to drive directly at him, even though he only did so to ensure the 18-ton lorry did not deviate when it braked.

Mr Underwood’s surviving family – five year old daughter Reann, 13 year old son Alan, and widow Dawn – originally pursued a personal injury claim with £250,000 in compensation.  However the total sum was reduced by nearly a third when taking Mr Underhill’s contributory negligence from standing in the path of the oncoming lorry.

The judge instead approved £17,500 in compensation for Reann, £10,500 for Alan, and £150,357 for Mrs Underwood.  The damages will be paid to the family jointly by the insurers for Mrs Radburn, who was the driver of the lorry, and Mr Underwood’s employers.  No information was made available regarding what percentage of the compensation award each insurer will be paying.

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