Flight attendant gets two-year road ban over smash
swords district court
AN Aer Lingus cabin crew member who has been found guilty of dangerous driving has been fined and disqualified from driving for two years.
Nicholas O'Connor (23) had only started his "dream job" with the airline a year prior to the incident which left a woman with two broken legs, a broken hand, nose and cheek after his red 2004-registered BMW crashed into her BMW in a head-on collision.
O'Connor, of Court View, Rathborne Apartments in Ashtown, Dublin 15, had pleaded not guilty at Blanchardstown District Court to dangerous driving at River Road in Ashtown on August 8, 2014.
A witness, Fran Rice, said he was driving on the road heading towards Finglas when a red 2004-registered BMW came towards him at speed on the other side of the road.
He said that after the car passed him by he heard a bang and saw a cloud of smoke.
He said he went to the scene and saw O'Connor holding his back on the side of the road and told him: "You are a very lucky man to get a second chance with life with the way you were driving."
He agreed with defence lawyer Jennifer Jackson that the road is a "dangerous road for someone who doesn't know it."
Joyce Gavin, who was driving the car O'Connor crashed into, said the crash happened within a split second.
"I saw a red flash, like he bounced and then felt the impact," said Ms Gavin.
O'Connor denied he was speeding and said, despite a witness saying he sped past them, that the driver was going slower than he was "so, yes, I would have appeared to be going faster". He said he had only driven the road three times.
Judge Alan Mitchell said he was satisfied speed was a major factor and convicted O'Connor of dangerous driving and said he hopes O'Connor won't lose his dream job as a result.