Her family said her world would be “forever lopsided” after her death
A truck driver killed a “dedicated” nurse after plowing into her car while getting a drink from his bag.
Kenneth Wilson, 55, has been sentenced to 28 months in prison after he looked off the road and fatally injured Tanya Forrest, 51, in an accident on November 3, 2019.
Wilson was driving an 18-ton truck when it collided with Tanya’s Ford Ka vehicle after she pulled over to the side of a state highway.
A court heard that the crash’s impact caused the Ford to tip over on its roof, with Tanya pronounced dead at the scene of the incident.
An unnamed 75-year-old passenger who was also in Tanya’s vehicle suffered life-changing injuries as a result of the “catastrophic” impact.
Wilson, from Doncaster, South Yorkshire, admitted to causing death from dangerous driving and serious injury from dangerous driving in a previous court appearance.
A Newcastle Crown Court judge jailed him for more than two years on Friday (May 6) and banned him from driving for three years and eight months.
“The world will forever be crooked because it no longer belongs”
In a statement following Friday’s sentencing, Tanya’s family said her world would be “forever lopsided” after her death.
They said, “There were two things Tanya loved more than anything, her family and her calling.
“We loved her and there are no words adequate for the deep sorrow and sadness we feel at her untimely passing.
“She was a proud, dedicated and qualified nurse.
“If she had not been killed in November 2019 she would have been on the front lines against Covid-19, standing shoulder to shoulder with her colleagues in the NHS, caring for patients and working long hours to help eradicate this pandemic.
“Not only did her family feel her loss, the world will forever be lopsided because she no longer belongs.
“We would like to thank the NHS, Tanya’s other family, in particular the team at Great North Air Ambulance, Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care A&E and the RVI Trauma and ICU team who saved our mother’s life against the odds and Graeme Harrison, Chaplain at NSECC for caring for us and her grieving colleagues.
“Northumbria Police and Prosecutors have worked extremely hard to achieve this result.
“We are forever grateful for their diligence and support.”
“An absolutely tragic case”
PC Steve Raeburn, of Northumbria Police’s Motor Patrol Branch, said: “This is an absolutely tragic case, compounding the possible consequences of driving without due care or attention.
“Wilson’s lack of concentration while reaching for a drink from his pocket led to an absolutely disastrous result.
“My thoughts go out to Tanya’s family and friends who have continued to struggle with the pain and anguish since her death.
PC Steve Raeburn added: “Had Wilson been paying attention, he should have been able to recognize and react to the stationary vehicle that had pulled up to the side of the lane.
“He had ample opportunity to avoid the collision – but he didn’t succeed.
“No verdict could ever fill the void left in the lives of Tanya’s loved ones, but I hope this outcome and the court’s sentencing of the person responsible for her death can bring some comfort.
“We all have a duty to drive safely and legally to protect all road users.
“We will continue to seek effective justice against anyone who disobeys the law and endangers the lives of others behind the wheel of a vehicle.”