Plasterer whose van was involved in accident had wrong vehicle insured

A plasterer whose van was involved in a traffic accident and who only found out following he accident he had insured another van he had sold rather than the one he intended to insure, was in Ballyhaunis District Court this week.

Mark O’Donaghue, 15 Sarsfield Manor, Charlestown, pleaded guilty in court to the charge of no insurance following communications with his insurance company who said they would not cover him. A van owned by O’Donaghue was being driven by Julisuar Seuza De Silva, 24 Carrowmore Drive, Knock, Co Mayo, when it was involved in a traffic accident outside Ballyhaunis Community School on November 11 2009 at 9am. The court was told by Brendan Donnelly, solicitor for O’Donaghue, that his client had paid €3,114 insuring a different van which he had sold previously, and accepted that it was his error in not checking that he had the correct van insured. Judge Mary Devins gave O’Donaghue the benefit of the Probation Act and ordered him to pay €250 to the Western Alzheimer’s association.

The driver of the van, Julisuar Seuza De Silva, contested a charge of dangerous driving against him arising out of the incident. De Silva insisted to the court that he was driving towards Ballyhaunis on the day in question at a reasonable speed and when he braked the wheels locked up and spun him out into the opposite carriageway, causing him to crash into a car being driven by Martin Walsh with three of his children on board. However the court heard evidence from Sgt Gabriel McLoughlin, the public service vehicle officer for Mayo Gardaí, that the tyres, braking, and steering system of the van were still in good working order following the crash. Sgt McLoughlin told the court that he even brought the van to a DOE test centre to check the brakes, and the test proved that they were working fine. Judge Mary Devins convicted and fined De Silva €600 for dangerous driving and disqualified him from driving for two years.


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