Accountant Instructs Serious Injury Lawyers To Help Her Access Therapies And Rehabilitation
A Staffordshire woman seriously injured in a head-on collision which also resulted in her horse being put down has spoken out on the ‘devastating’ impact it’s had on her life after the driver was sentenced.
Sarah Cunningham, from Handsacre, was riding her horse Rubrics along a single, dead-end lane in Nethertown, near Lichfield, when a 4x4 car collided with them.
Woman taken to hospital and horse put down following collision
Rubrics had to be put down at the side of the lane due to the severity of his injuries. Sarah was taken to Derby hospital where she was found to have sustained four broken ribs and six other fractures resulting in her using a wheelchair for 12 weeks and being off work for 11 months. Prior to the incident, Sarah worked as a senior finance business partner.
Serious injury lawyers instructed
Following the collision, in December 2022, Sarah, 40, instructed expert serious injury lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to help her access the ongoing rehabilitation and therapies she requires as part of her recovery.
At a hearing at Stafford Crown Court on 15 December 2023, the uninsured driver of the vehicle was sentenced to 120 hours community service and an 18-month community order. He was also fined £300 and given a 12-month driving ban. It comes after he previously pleaded guilty to causing serious injury by careless or inconsiderate driving.
Expert Opinion“The past year has been incredibly difficult for Sarah as she attempts to come to terms with the impact of her injuries.
“Understandably, she also remains heartbroken by the loss of her beloved horse Rubrics, who was a grey thoroughbred, ex-racehorse aged 13. She was unable to say goodbye to him due to her injuries and suspected spinal damage at the scene.
“While Sarah continues to progress with her recovery, she faces many challenges. We’re determined to support her so she can access the treatment she needs to move forward with her life as best she can.
“Horse riders are among the most vulnerable of road users and road traffic incidents can cause not only serious physical injuries but also emotional trauma for the horse rider and life-ending injuries to their horse. The impact can be devastating and remain with the injured person life-long.” Cathryn Godfrey, Serious Injury lawyer
Road traffic accident: Sarah's story and recovery
The collision happened on 7 December 2022, when Sarah was riding Rubrics back to stables at Brook House Farm, Nethertown.
Sarah suffered multiple broken ribs and fractures to her right shoulder, left ankle and left foot, as well as a head injury. She’s also been affected psychologically.
Sarah said after the hearing: “I am still haunted by the collision and losing Rubrics so suddenly due to someone else’s actions. It was devastating. He was my horse of a lifetime and I really struggle to imagine myself ever getting back to riding without him.
“I’ve spent the past year focusing on my recovery. Horse riding was my main hobby, but I was also a runner, enjoyed going to the gym and boxing. I have not been able to return to these activities yet.
“I really wish I could turn back the clock and change what happened that day, but I know that’s not possible. All I can do is continue to work hard on my recovery. I hope that by sharing my story, I can urge road users to be safe and take care at all times. I wouldn’t wish what I’ve been through on anyone.”