Driver jailed for head-on smash on dark country lane that left man seriously injured

A driver who smashed head-on into an oncoming car after overtaking on a dark country lane in near-freezing conditions has been jailed.

Friday, 7th May 2021, 6:00 am

Jack Hall was seen to tailgate, failed to indicate at junctions, drove at speed and overtook several cars during a 20-minute spell of "aggressive" driving, before ploughing into a BMW and seriously injuring the driver.

Leeds Crown Court heard how witnesses saw the 28-year-old's erratic driving at Fitzwilliam, near Wakefield, at around 6.30pm on December 16, 2019.

It was dark and the temperature was close to freezing when his Audi A4 first overtook two cars on Weeland Road.

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Leeds Crown Court

Frances Pencheon, prosecuting, said one witness estimated he had been travelling at around 50mph in a 30mph zone.

Other drivers said Hall was then driving close to vehicles in front of him.

He overtook another vehicle and then almost collided with a car pulling out of a junction.

On Garmil Head Lane, he tailgated one woman who said she felt nervous because he was so close.

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The driver he overtook estimated that he was travelling between 80 and 90mph.

Hall tried to pull back in after completing the overtaking move, but lost control and the Audi veered back into the path of the BMW.

The last memory the BMW driver had was the loud bang, before becoming unconscious.

He was taken to Leeds General Infirmary with stomach and spleen injuries and broken toes.

He needed surgery on his stomach and sometime later, on his foot.

An impact statement suggested he suffered mentally after the crash, and lost his job of 24 years.

Hall, of Hunters Farm Glade, Kinsley, initially denied responsibility for the crash, claiming the car he had overtaken had accelerated when he tried the manoeuvre.

He pleaded guilty to causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

Nathan Davis, mitigating, said Hall had shown remorse for his actions and added: "He accepts it's a stupid and serious error of judgement.

"He made an extremely poor decision."

Mr Davis said Hall had also been seriously injured in the crash.

He needed surgery after suffering a punctured lung and fractures to his spine and leg

The barrister said Hall was a sales executive for Car Buying Group, was engaged and had a second child on the way.

Judge Robin Mairs told Hall: "It was by mercy and by luck rather than design that the collision did not kill both of you.

"This was not a momentary loss of attention. You had driven in this manner for up to 20 minutes.

"There were previous overtaking manoeuvres which were clearly unsafe."

Hall was jailed for 10 months and banned from driving for three years and five months.