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February 6, 2004

Pensioner avoids driving ban after crash

From: Suffolk Evening Star, UK - Feb 6, 2004

AN ELDERLY deaf man has narrowly avoided a motoring ban after he crashed into a car then drove off.

Charles Elvin, 77, of Heathercroft Road, Ipswich, appeared before South East Suffolk magistrates in Ipswich where he admitted careless driving and failing to stop after an accident in Woodbridge's Station Road car park.

Prosecutor Stephen Coleman said Elvin was asked to move his Metro after it was parked across two parking bays on August 13.

Mr Coleman said: "A woman motorist watched him move his car back and forth a number of times attempting to get into one of the spaces.

"She offered to park the vehicle for him and then saw Elvin reverse out of the space and collide with the front of her car."

The witness tried to stop him but Elvin continued to move backwards and forwards before driving towards the exit.

She followed him in her vehicle to try and stop him again, but had to get out the way as he headed out of the car park.

Speaking through a sign language interpreter, he said: "I just didn't see."

The court heard his wife is deaf and blind and would be upset if anyone got in the car. She frets and gets anxious.

Magistrates were told Elvin needed the car to ferry his wife around and take her to hospital once a month for a blood test.

Bench chairman Ted Draper said: "We have taken a long time to consider this case but we feel that in view of his clean driving record we are not going to disqualify him."

Elvin was given five points on his driving licence for failing to stop after the accident and not reporting the crash, which he also admitted.

He was also fined £40 for careless driving.

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