Saturday, August 13, 2022

Family of new grandmother killed in crash on A15 in Lincolnshire issue road safety warning

The family of a grandmother killed when a taxi crashed into a tractor have issued a road safety plea.

Isabella Hopkins was fatally injured when the taxi she was a rear seat passenger in struck a trailer attached to a tractor. The taxi then collided with the central reservation on the A15 near Barton-upon-Humber.

Isabella, 58, who had become a first-time grandmother six weeks earlier, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Following the incident her husband of 36 years Mark, 62, instructed expert road accident lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to help the family access the specialist support they require.

Mark, of Ashby, Scunthorpe, has now joined his legal team in marking National Road Victim Awareness Month to warn of the consequences of motorists not taking care on the roads. It comes after Irwin Mitchell secured an undisclosed settlement from the insurers of the driver who was jailed.

Liz Whitehead, a specialist road accident lawyer at Irwin Mitchell representing Mark and the couple’s children, Amy and Steven aged 31 and 37, said: “Mark and his family remain devastated by their loss and the needless circumstances in which Isabella lost her life.

“Isabella was a much-loved wife, mum and grandmother, whose loss is still painfully felt by her family. While nothing can make up for what’s happened we’re pleased to have secured this settlement which we hope will allow them to look to the future the best they can.

“Sadly this family’s story vividly highlights the tragic consequences people can be left to face following collisions on the roads. Therefore we urge all road users to take care to help reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured.”

Isabella had taken early retirement from her job as a hospital phlebotomist. She worked part-time accompanying children with learning difficulties to and from school and was on her way home from a job when the collision happened on 25 February, 2019.

Mark, who met Isabella at a New Year’s Eve party in 1980, has since retired from his job as a medical laboratory assistant to help look after their twin granddaughters born weeks before his wife’s death.

He said: “Isabella was so excited to be a grandmother. She was so proud and had been knitting frantically.

“Isabella was the most generous and kind person I’ve ever known. Family was everything to her and she would give anything for them. She adored occasions like birthdays and Christmas; that she didn’t get to celebrate any of these with her grandchildren; break our hearts. Such days are just not the same without Isabella.

“Isabella and I were looking forward to a new chapter in our lives as grandparents while also enjoying time together and making plans for the future. Sadly I feel cheated that this has been taken away from us.

“The last few years and trying to come to terms with what’s happened have been incredibly difficult for everyone. We remain heartbroken at what’s happened. I lost my wife of 36 years, the children their wonderful mum and the grandchildren will never get to grow up with Isabella and feel the love she had for them. Given the nature of Isabella’s work we’re just thankful that a child wasn’t in the car at the time, as the outcome may have also been catastrophic for the parents.

“No sentence can ever make up for the pain our family continues to suffer. We just hope that speaking out we can help realise why it’s so important to take care on the roads. I wouldn’t wish the pain we still face on anyone.”

Amy added: “For a long time after the collision we just felt numb. The whole period was supposed to be such a happy time for everyone. Mum was going to play a major role in looking after the children and was helping me organise my wedding for that August. However, that all changed in a moment.

“Mum was so excited about the wedding and helping me with the arrangements. When she died I considered postponing the wedding but dad convinced me it’s not what she would’ve wanted. Although the day went ahead it had totally lost its magic without her.

“Several years on it upsets me that mum isn’t here. She’d be so proud of the girls and how they’re developing. I’d do anything to have her in our lives but we know that’s not possible. But if we can try and prevent others facing what we are, then we take some small comfort from that.”

The taxi driver was found guilty of causing death by careless or inconsiderate driving and received a nine month prison term in 2020.

National Road Victim Awareness Month runs throughout August and is organised by RoadPeace, the national charity for road crash victims.


Picture shows Isabella Hopkins and daughter Amy.

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