Lorry driver avoids jail for killing Lord Taylor of Blackburn on zebra crossing

Lorry driver avoids jail for killing Lord Taylor of Blackburn on zebra crossing

The incident took place outside the House of Lords

Monday, April 9, 2018

A lorry driver has avoided jail after he knocked a veteran Labour peer off his mobility scooter and killed him.

Lord Taylor of Blackburn was on a zebra crossing outside the House of Lords when the heavy goods vehicle crashed into him.

The 87-year-old great grandfather suffered severe head injuries and died in hospital days later.

Former Nepalese Gurkha Kul Pandey, from Feltham, west London, pleaded guilty to causing his death by careless driving.

The 56-year-old was handed 24 weeks in jail suspended for two years, plus 200 hours of unpaid work. He was also disqualified from driving for three years.

The Old Bailey heard how it was raining and dark as he stopped at the zebra crossing, overshooting the give way sign, in November 2016.

He allowed several pedestrians to go but pulled out two seconds after Lord Taylor began to cross without checking his mirrors properly.

After hitting the Lancashire peer, he told his assistant in the cab: "I think I have hit someone. I think I have killed them."

​Mitigating, Michael Rawlinson said Pandey was a "proud, hard-working man" who put his wife and 15-year-old son first.

He acknowledged the "immeasurable" suffering and hurt of the Taylor family and said Pandey would live with the consequences of his actions every day.

Sentencing him at the Old Bailey, Judge Anuja Dhir QC said: "The size of the vehicle you were driving and the weather conditions on that day should have meant that you were even more careful than you would normally be. You were not."

The judge suspended his sentence because of Pandey's "genuine remorse" and the potential effect on his family.

Rawlinson also told the court that a "former military man" watching the case in the public gallery had offered to pay any costs on behalf of Pandey.