Ambulance crash victim awarded £430k Compensation

Compensation of £430,000 has been awarded to a man who suffered severe injuries when the car he was driving was hit by an ambulance. James Greenaway, 32, was travelling in a car with 5 other young men near Wadebridge, Cornwall when it was hit head-on by an ambulance driving on the wrong side of the road. They had been returning from a night-out in Newquay on 24 May 2003. His brother Alex Greenaway, 21, and their friend David Bellringer, 22, were both killed in the crash.

The driver of the ambulance was Graham Dudman who had been employed as an ambulance driver for nearly 30 years. He was convicted of careless driving, was fined £1000, and was disqualified from driving for year at a court hearing in 2004, he has since retired.

The judge at Exeter County Court awarded the compensation against the Westcountry Ambulance Service Trust after Mr Greenaway lost a kidney and suffered multiple other injuries including a head fracture in the accident. The court heard that he will never be able to work full-time again and is still haunted by memories of the crash. Mr Greenaway told the court that the accident had changed him completely. “It’s just a mess no one wants to go through,” he said.

Ann Amy Greenaway, his mother, said that they were all pleased with the compensation amount, but it did not make up for what they had been through. She said: “I will never think that justice has been done because my son Alex and his friend were killed. I’ve never stopped thinking about Alex, but there is nothing I can do, nothing can bring him back.”

The judge at the hearing David Tyzack said Mr Greenaway faced a daunting and daily challenge of enduring debilitating pain and sleep deprivation against the background of two deaths. “It is very unlikely he will ever fully recover from the tragedy,” he added.

The Westcountry Ambulance Services Trust had admitted liability at a previous court date but this hearing was necessary to assess the amount of compensation to be paid. A spokesperson for them said: “We deeply regret the accident and we have resolved the case.”

Mr Dudman could provide no adequate explanation for why he was driving on the wrong side of the road. In a police interview read out in court he said: “All I can remember of the incident is a sudden vision of headlights and a car coming straight towards our vehicle at a speed, skidding and swerving from my right to my left side.” He also told police he could not remember anything immediately before the accident.


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