Lancashire

Blackpool fatal crash driver 'used excessive speed'

A teenager killed her friend by driving too fast on a bend and crashing into a tree in Blackpool, a court heard.

Naomi Jones, 19, from Wesham was on a narrow "very bumpy" unclassified road when the crash happened on Division Lane, in July last year.

Elysia Ashworth died in hospital two days after the car crash, Preston Crown Court heard.

Jones has admitted causing death by careless driving but denies causing death by dangerous driving.

Speeds signs missing

She estimated she was travelling at between 30mph and 40mph but Eric Lamb prosecuting argued she drove at "excessive speed" and caused the death of Miss Ashworth, a pupil at King Edward Queen Mary School, Lytham, with her dangerous driving.

Jones told the court she was not familiar with the road and could not negotiate a blind left bend after she hit two bumps in quick succession.

The defendant and another friend, front seat passenger Ellen Richardson, were able to get out of the silver Vauxhall Corsa before emergency services arrived.

An accident investigator later examined the scene and estimated the speed at point of impact was between 30mph and 35mph which "must mean the approach speed would have been greater", said Mr Lamb.

Markings from where the vehicle had hit bumps in the road indicated the vehicle was travelling at "excessive speed" as it approached the bend, he told the court.

'Obvious danger'

The jury heard there should have been two 30mph speed limit signs near the scene but one was missing and another was not visible after being knocked into undergrowth.

Jones, of Carr Drive in Wesham, had passed her driving test four months before the collision.

Mr Lamb said she was driving too fast, stating "no competent or careful driver would have risked the obvious danger to the occupants of the car and to anyone travelling in the opposite direction."

The trial continues.

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