Woman who crashed and killed man while texting and driving jailed for three years
POLICE have warned motorists not to use mobile phones while driving after a woman who crashed and killed a man as she sent a text message was jailed for three years.
Susan Noble, 29, of Armthorpe, Doncaster, was sentenced at Teesside Crown Court for causing death by dangerous driving.
She pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to causing the death of Alexandru Braninski, 25, in a collision on the A19 near Northallerton at 9.10pm on Tuesday December 27 2011.
Mr Braninski, a Romanian national, suffered traumatic injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene on the north-bound carriageway between the A684 and the A172.
The collision involved a Skoda Octavia, which was stationary at the side of the road with a puncture in one of its tyres, and a Ford Fiesta driven by Noble.
Mr Braninski, a passenger in the Skoda, was standing behind the vehicle while the wheel was being changed when the Fiesta collided with him and pushed the Skoda into a field at the side of the road.
Police secured clear evidence that Noble was using a mobile phone to exchange text messages with a friend.
As well as receiving three years' imprisonment, Noble was also disqualified from driving for six years and will have to take an extended driving test.
Traffic Sergeant John Lumbard, of North Yorkshire Police's roads policing group, said: "Susan Noble has fully accepted that she is responsible for the tragic death of Mr Braninski due to a serious error of judgment.
"I want this tragedy to send a very clear message to drivers that using mobile phones whilst driving can and does lead to horrific consequences. Research from around the world has shown time and time again that this behaviour does cause drivers to lose concentration on the road ahead.
"Ideally you should turn phones off while you are driving so that you are not distracted by an unexpected call. However, if you must use a phone while on the move, it is essential that you use a hands-free kit.
"As well as leaving one man dead, the collision has left a family grieving for their loss and a young woman with the knowledge that she is responsible for his untimely death."