3-year driving ban handed down to lorry driver who caused farmer’s death

A 3-year driving ban and a suspended jail sentence was reportedly handed down to a lorry driver who caused a farmer’s death in a crash in Northern Ireland.

In June 2014, William Mark Murphy was driving a lorry that was involved in a crash with a tractor and trailer along a section of a duel carriageway in Co. Tyrone, according to BBC News.

As a result of this collision, Pheilm Brady – a 69-year-old farmer – was killed after he was knocked from the drawbar where he was standing between the tractor and the trailer. Pheilm’s son, Paul, was driving the tractor that was towing the trailer.

Murphy, a 53-year-old from Co. Down, also reportedly received a suspended 4-month jail sentence for causing death by careless driving. His jail sentence was suspended for three years, BBC News added.

A court in Belfast heard how Murphy was travelling along a stretch of road between Dungannon and Ballygawley when he attempted to overtake the tractor and trailer.

However, he was allegedly forced to abort the manoeuvre due to a speeding car coming up on the outside lane.

When the 53-year-old swerved the lorry back into the inside lane he was unable to slow down sufficiently and hit the rear of the trailer being towed by the tractor as a result.

Originally, Murphy had been charged with causing death by dangerous driving, something he denied from the beginning. However, a jury previously found the lorry driver guilty of the lesser charge of causing death by careless driver, BBC News reported.

The Co. Down man accepted this charge from the outset. Murphy is understood to have been “consumed with grief and remorse” since the accident, BBC News added.

Previously, the deceased’s son had also been charged with causing death by dangerous driving. It was found that Paul Brady was driving the tractor at the time of the accident without insurance while being disqualified. A retrial was ordered in this case.