Dramatic video shows the moment an overtaking driver causes a high-speed smash – by forgetting to check his mirrors.
The footage shows the dash cam vehicle starting to pass a tractor only to be sent spinning into the farm vehicle and off the road by another driver.
David Christie, driving a Skoda Yeti, fails to check his wing mirror before himself pulling out and shunting Stephen Heather off the road.
Christie, 40, was given five penalty points and a £300 fine on Tuesday at Dundee Sheriff Court after pleading guilty to careless driving in late September.
Stephen, 34, from Dundee, escaped injury but his girlfriend, Malgorzata Dutkiewicz, 32, needed three months off work as a result of the accident on March 10 this year on the A92 just south of the Tay Road Bridge.
In the clip, Stephen can be seen pulling his car out to overtake the Skoda.
He is about halfway through overtaking in the clip before the Skoda Yeti signals to come out and pulls-out into the side of Stephen’s car.
The Lexus then loses control and smashes into tractor before spinning out of control over the edge of the road and ending up in a grass just in front of water.
Speaking shortly after his conviction last month, Stephen said: “When something like this happens to you, it makes you second guess everything.
“It took months for me to get used to overtaking slower traffic even on motorways, giving the same scenario again I wouldn’t have overtaken.
“To think this could have been prevented if the other driver had only checked his mirrors. If I had been on a motor bike I wouldn’t be here sharing the experience.”
A spokesman for road safety website SWD Media, who obtained the video, said: “Although the sentence was discounted to account for his early guilty plea, I feel the sentence still reflects the seriousness of his error.
“It is vital drivers are regularly checking their mirrors so they are aware of what’s going on around them.
“Especially when about to overtake, to make sure the road is clear and it’s safe to do so – there are no excuses not to.”
Neil Greig, Director of Policy and Research, IAMRoadsmart, reckons Stephen would have been better biding his time before overtaking.
He said: “The car with the dash cam should not really have overtaken two vehicles unless they were absolutely sure it was safe to do so.
“The driver of the car that was behind the tractor should not have moved out into the path of the overtaking car.
“However the overtaking car may have been in a blind spot for a large car.
“The best thing to do here would have been to offer the car behind the tractor the chance to overtake rather than pushing on past.”
A spokesman for the AA said: “It is the basics of check mirrors, indicate and then manoeuvre. “Although the car in front doesn’t show signs of wanting to overtake, such as out edging out to check for oncoming traffic.
“I think the driver behind has to be prepared for the possibility that it might – particularly with the added danger of wet conditions.
“It’s a good lesson for what might happen when trying to overtake slow agricultural machinery in the country.”
A spokesman at Dundee Sheriff Court confirmed that David Christie, 40, was given a sentence of five penalty points discounted from six and a £300 fine discounted from £450, due to his early guilty plea.
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