News

Man wins court appeal to have driving suspension slashed

ALARMING: The remains of a tow truck after a crash at Aldershot in January.
ALARMING: The remains of a tow truck after a crash at Aldershot in January. File

A MAN who crashed a tow truck off the side of Aldershot's Farrell Bridge has won a court appeal to have his six month driving suspension slashed to three months.

Blake Joshua Miller, 25, pleaded guilty to driving without due care and attention in March in Maryborough Magistrates Court, and was fined $1500 and suspended from driving for six months.

But Miller appealed the sentence, arguing that the six month suspension was "manifestly excessive".

The court heard the crash happened on January 10 this year when Miller was driving a tow truck in the southbound land of the Bruce Highway.

Miller fell asleep while driving and when he woke, he saw the truck veering to the left, so he steered right and said he believed the back wheel hit the guard rail of the bridge.

The truck then came off the bridge on the opposite side.

Miller was breath-tested by police at the scene, but returned a negative result.

Evidence given to the court showed that Miller had been fatigued when the crash happened, having slept for five hours before his shift from 7.30pm to 12.30am.

He told police that prior to the crash he "felt his eyes getting tired" so he put the window down and continued driving.

Police also found the back wheels of the truck were devoid of tread and Miller said he was not aware of that as he did not conduct the proper inspection of the truck before starting his journey.

Magistrate John Smith heard the case in March and gave the initial sentence.

In August, the appeal was heard in the District Court of Queensland by Judge Helen Bowskill.

Judge Bowskill said it was clear Mr Smith considered the circumstances of the offence very serious as Miller was a professional truck driver using the Bruce Hwy and he had warning signs of being tired but did not heed them.

"The Magistrate clearly considered there was a need for community protection in the circumstances," Judge Bowskill said in her judgement.

She found a period of suspension was appropriate, but that an error "has been made in the exercise of the discretion by the magistrate in setting the period of the disqualification", and said Mr Smith could have been assisted if he had been referred to comparable decisions in handing down the sentence.

Judge Bowskill ordered the Commissioner of Police, the respondent in the matter, to pay Miller $412.50 for the cost of the court transcript, but ordered each party to pay their own legal fees.

The Department of Transport and Main Roads was approached to try to ascertain the cost of rebuilding the section of the bridge that was damaged in the crash.

"We are in the process of negotiating an outcome with the parties involved in the crash at Aldershot," the spokeswoman said.

"For legal reasons we are not able to provide the cost of repairs to the bridge at this stage."

Topics:  maryborugh



How to survive a bushfire in your car

IT SOUNDS like a nightmare, but it can happen.

Eight reasons to join the RFS

SPREAD across 93% of Queensland, the Rural Fire Service has about 36,000 volunteers. And you could be one of them.

What if my insurer gives me grief?

CLAIMING your insurance cover after a natural disaster can go one of two ways. It can be a breeze, or like pulling teeth.

Strikes could impact Centrelink and Medicare services

Centrelink signs in Melbourne, Saturday, June, 25, 2016.  (AAP Image/Tracey Nearmy) NO ARCHIVING

Customers are also encouraged to use online services.

Four people killed in region over horror weekend

TRAGIC: Toowoomba man Scott Stallman, with wife Monique, was one of four killed in our region at the weekend.

Police warn to take care on the road in the lead up to Christmas

KICK THE KILOS: Mackay jumps ahead of Bundy

Who will take out the glory? Just two weeks to go in the ARM Kick the Kilos competition.

MACKAY has finally jumped in front of Bundaberg.

Local Partners

Katie Holmes' empowering directorial debut

Katie Holmes

KATIE Holmes as made her directorial debut

Jennifer Lawrence gives keys to new partner

Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence

Oscar winner settling down with new partner

Rogue One star proud to lead new Star Wars film

Felicity Jones leads the new Star Wars film

Star Wars lead proud to be in front in sci-fi

What's on the small screen this week

Ernie Dingo stars in the TV series Going Places with Ernie Dingo.

ERNIE Dingo stars in a new travel series and Seven airs the AACTAs.

Mandy Moore feels like she's 60

Mandy Moore sees herself as a 60-year-old rather than a 32-year-old

Goooodbye Hamish and Andy (from our radios)

Hamish and Andy

The pair have been on air since 2006

INSIDE STORY: Disused pipeline stops hundreds from building

TRAIL OF TEARS: Route of the disused Santos oil pipeline which is stopping hundreds of Ipswich residents from building.

Santos responds but Tully says easements issue must be addressed

Chinese locked out of Australian property market

The rules are different if you're a foreigner

The buyer was from China - the trouble started right there

Morrison signs off on new affordable rental model

Australia's Treasurer Scott Morrison speaks during a press conference after a meeting of the Council of Federal Financial Relations at Parliament House in Canberra, Friday, Dec. 2, 2016.

Scott Morrison signed off on development of a new financing model

Coast high-flyer's fight back from bankruptcy, $72m debt

Scott Juniper went from millionaire developer to declaring bankruptcy in2012, now he is back on top of his game again with new developments including this one in Coolum.

'Apocalyptic lending storm' causes financial collapse.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!