96yo surrenders licence after freak crash pins mum
IT'S incredibly difficult to give up a driving licence, effectively surrendering a significant part of one's independence.
But a car park accident where a mother was pinned between vehicles and then facing court for a charge over the crash led to one 96-year-old Rockhampton man coming to the conclusion it was that time for him.
Kenneth Hope Bambrick pleaded guilty in the Rockhampton Magistrates Court on Monday to driving without due care.
Police prosecutor Jess King said the accident happened at Northside Plaza about noon on March 29 as Bambrick attempted to back out of a car park.
She said the mother was waiting with her two daughters at the back of her car while Bambrick backed out of his parking space.
Just as Bambrick's car was facing the woman's Kluger on an angle, his foot slipped off the brake and onto the accelerator, resulting in his car taking off at such a force, it pushed the Kluger into the vehicle on the other side.
Defence lawyer Samantha Legrady said Bambrick had regular health checks and eye tests ahead of renewing his licence each year.
She said he only drove to get groceries or visit family.
Every Queenslander over 75 must carry a current medical certificate for driving that is valid for 12 months.
Magistrate Cameron Press warned he was looking at disqualifying Bambrick from driving ahead of sentencing, leading to the matter being stood down for a short time.
"He's happy to hand in his driver's licence," Ms Legrady said when they returned. "He says it has gotten to that time in life."
"I know it's hard but I think it's come time to hand in your drivers licence," Mr Press said ahead of fining him $294 and disqualifying him from driving for three months.
Ms Legrady said Bambrick, who was supported by one of his grandson's in court, could ask his family to help in future.