Horse death: Teenager would have been made an example of

Driving instructor expresses sentence concern.

I would like to make a comment about the item on the front page of the Midweek Herald on June 1, regarding an accident in which an elderly man was fined �215 for the combined offences of driving without due care and failing to stop after an accident.

Having been a driving instructor for more than a decade, I am very, very aware of the fact that should one of our 17 year olds have an accident the police and Director of Public Prosecutions are often very ready to “make an example” of them.

What puzzles me most about this particular incident is that it seems to me that it is inconceivable that someone should “not notice” that they had hit a horse. This wasn’t a night time accident - it happened at midday.

In this case a much loved and valued horse was lost and a rider frightened and injured. Would the punishment have been more robust had it been a child on a cycle? And if so, why? Surely the offence would have been the same?

How can any of us in the Driver Training Industry train young people to a high standard of driving, if older folk are let off the hook with lesser prosecutions than would (almost certainly) have been levied at an 18 year old boy committing the same act?

Meg Privett (Dip DI)

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(Diploma in Driving Instruction)