Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

The Deaths of This Mum and Her Little Girl Could Have Bees N Avoided; 'Driver Should Have Seen GP'

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

The Deaths of This Mum and Her Little Girl Could Have Bees N Avoided; 'Driver Should Have Seen GP'

Article excerpt

THE deaths of a mother and daughter caused by a motorist driving the wrong way could have been avoided if the driver had taken medical advice, an inquest heard.

Mya Richardson, six, and her mother Joanne, 40, from Billingham, were killed after a car driving on the wrong carriageway of the A1 hit their vehicle. The pair were passengers in a black Jaguar which smashed with a burgundy Jaguar as it headed north up the southbound dual carriageway, half a mile north of the Gosforth Park Interchange in Newcastle in August last year.

The driver of the burgundy Jaguar Larry Sheldon, 61, of Blyth, Northumberland, was arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving but died in October of a brain tumour.

An inquest into the deaths of Mrs Richardson and Mya heard yesterday that Mr Sheldon had complained of headaches but hadn't consulted his GP.

During the hearing at Newcastle Civic Centre yesterday, Mrs Richardson's father said the accident should never have happened. He said: "I just wish he had seen a doctor sooner. He shouldn't have been driving if he was that ill."

Mr Richardson, 37, who was driving the car, survived with minor injuries, along with the couple's one-year-old daughter Ava.

The inquest was told Mr Sheldon, who suffered from arrhythmia and diabetes, had been on his way to pick his wife up from Shiremoor Metro Station in North Tyneside but had lost his bearings.

Before entering the southbound carriageway he turned right instead of left onto the dual carriageway before crashing head-on into Mr Richardson's car. Efforts by other motorists to alert Mr Sheldon failed. Coroner David Mitford said: "There are numerous indications on the road. If you were to make a mistake in the first place there are road traffic signs and markings on the road to say you were going the wrong way."

PC Garron Cobb, of Northumbria Police collision investigation unit, said: "Mr Richardson described seeing the car coming the other way and him having no more than three seconds to move. …

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