Harry Clarke Admits Motoring Offence
17 February 2017, 16:07
The driver of a bin lorry which crashed in Glasgow killing six people has admitted culpable and reckless driving on a separate occasion just nine months after the tragedy.
Harry Clarke, 60, appeared at Glasgow Sheriff Court where he pleaded guilty to driving a car in the city on September 20 2015 to the danger of the public, despite his licence having been revoked for medical reasons.
Six people died in December 2014 when the refuse lorry lost control in Glasgow city centre.
He admitted driving in the knowledge he had suffered a loss of consciousness while at the wheel of a moving refuse collection vehicle on December 22 2014, resulting in the deaths and leaving 15 more people injured.
He also knew he had suffered a loss of consciousness or episode of altered awareness while at the wheel of a stationary bus on April 7, 2010.
His licence had been revoked for 12 months on June 27, 2015 and the charge states that he knew or ought to have known that he was unfit to drive, and that there was a risk he might lose consciousness or suffer an episode of altered awareness while driving.
Clarke was not prosecuted over the crash, with the Crown Office insisting there was insufficient evidence to raise criminal proceedings.
In a rare legal move, relatives of three crash victims sought permission from senior judges to bring charges against him in a private prosecution.
However, judges at the Appeal Court in Edinburgh ruled in November last year the family could not launch a private prosecution.
Jack and Lorraine Sweeney, 68 and 69, and their granddaughter Erin McQuade, 18, Stephenie Tait, 29, Jacqueline Morton, 51, and Gillian Ewing, 52, died in the incident.
A fatal accident inquiry (FAI) heard Mr Clarke had a history of health issues but had not disclosed his medical background to his employers or the DVLA.