A DRIVER who fell asleep at the wheel, causing an accident that killed a 22-year-old pregnant woman, was sentenced to three years in prison.
The accident happened on the A27 near Polegate on June 4, 2020.
Niklaus Warner, of School Road in Hastings, pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving and causing serious injuries by dangerous driving in court on June 23, 2021.
29-year-old passenger Meghan Pollentine died in the crash of two vehicles.
Warner had brought him and his colleague Meghan back from Havant, Hampshire, after their night shift as mental health caregivers ended.
They had been driving for an hour and 15 minutes when the silver Ford KA Warner he was driving was seen veering across the road, crashing into an oncoming white Ford Transit van.
Meghan was pronounced dead at the scene.
The driver of the van suffered life-changing injuries and spent a month in hospital after the collision.
Warner was arrested and during an interview he said he did not remember the route or the reason his car had entered the opposite roadway.
Dashcam footage of the vehicle driving behind Warner’s car showed the Ford KA veering above the center white line several times before the collision and showed that no braking had taken place in the moments immediately preceding the collision .
Warner admitted to the two offenses and was sentenced to three years in prison by Lewes court on Friday, August 20.
After her death, it was discovered that Meghan, from Bexhill, was five months pregnant with a baby boy.
Paying tribute to her, her family said: “We lost our dear Meg a year ago in this very tragic accident.
“Meghan was passionate and happy, she had an infectious laugh and was a lovely soul overall. Our lives will never be the same after Meghan was so suddenly taken from us.
“There are questions that will go unanswered, questions that will always be there; why didn’t he stop and rest when he had the chance? Why didn’t he ask Meg to drive the last part of the trip home?
“I hope Mr Warner will use this time to reflect on the impact of his behavior on our family and how we will never see Meghan again or meet her baby.”
PC investigator Doug Park said: “This is a tragic incident that could have been avoided if Niklaus Warner had taken the appropriate breaks in his trip.
“He had plenty of opportunities to stop and rest, to make sure he didn’t go on a long trip when he was tired, but he chose not to take them. This choice ultimately resulted in the death of a much loved 22-year-old woman.
“Driving while tired is a serious danger to yourself and to all other road users, and it’s not worth the risk. ”
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This notice was published: 2021-08-20 17:16:33