A MAN accused of causing the death of a fellow motorist by dangerous driving has gone on trial.
Carlisle Crown Court has heard how 53-year-old van driver David Mitchell died at the scene of a collision with an HGV on the evening of November 6, 2015. This occurred in darkness on the B5305, at the entrance to Greenrigg Farm, near Wigton.
The HGV driver, Nigel James Stevens, faces two charges arising out of the incident.
As his trial began today (MON), a jury heard the 55-year-old admits a charge of causing the death of Mr Mitchell, of Waverton, by careless driving. However, Stevens denies his driving was dangerous.
Opening the case, prosecutor Jacob Dyer said Stevens was attempting to reverse the wagon into the farm entrance near his Greenrigg Cottages home. While the tractor unit was on the correct side of the road, his potato-laden trailer “was across both carriageways”.
The speed at which Mr Mitchell’s van struck the trailer was estimated at “30-40mph”. He suffered fatal head injuries and, said Mr Dyer, “didn’t have a chance” of avoiding a collision.
It was alleged there had been dangerous driving by Stevens. However, Stevens insisted he had “driven to the standard of a careful and competent driver”.
The trial continues.