Moment of distraction led to tragic crash

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A motorist who caused the death of another driver after she strayed onto the wrong side of the road walked free from Lincoln Crown Court on Friday.

Cheryl Avins was driving her transit van north on her way to work along the A15 when she momentarily lost attention and collided with two oncoming vehicles.

As a result of the collision, Mandy Sewell, 47, lost her life. Mrs Sewell, who lived in the village of Rippingale, near Bourne, was travelling to work at the Peterborough Passport Office where she was operations manager.

Mark Van der Zwart , prosecuting, said Avins vehicle suddenly veered over the centre white line near to the village of Thurlby and after hitting one oncoming car collided with a second vehicle.

Avins ,32, of Cold Ashby Road, Naseby, Northants, admitted causing death by careless driving as a result of the collision on the morning of 14 January this year. She was given 250 hours unpaid work and disqualified from driving for 18 months.

Judge Sean Morris told her “Nothing I can do can ever repair the damage that has been done. You are a decent hard-working woman who has never been in trouble with the law. You were not in drink and you were not on any form of medication that could have caused this.

“Nobody set out that day to kill. This is not a murder. This is a tragic, tragic mistake.”

Simon Clarke, defending, said: “She has guilt for surviving the accident. I was asked not to mitigate on her behalf because she says the family have suffered enough already.

“While she was driving along within the speed limit she wandered two or three feet into the opposite carriageway. No-one is ever going to know why this happened. We can only speculate.”