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Driver Who Caused Horrific Road Crash Which Left Father And Son Seriously Injured Is Jailed

James Reece Was Banned From Driving For Four-And-A-Half Years After Pleading Guilty To Causing Serious Injury By Dangerous Driving

03.03.2017

A Buxton man left with serious injuries after he and his son were hit while out on his motorcycle says he hopes the jailing of the driver who caused the crash will serve as a lesson to others.

Peter Limer, 46, from Buxton, and his 14-year-old son, Jamie, were riding on Peter’s motorbike to his father’s house at Longnor in June 2015 when a Land Rover Freelander, driven by James Reece, hit them while they were travelling slowly behind a lorry, catapulting them over a wall and into a field.

The family has instructed specialist serious injury lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to help secure them funds to support their rehabilitation and recovery as Peter has been unable to return to work since due to severe head and leg injuries. Jamie fractured both his legs and needed nine hours of surgery.

James Reece, formerly of Lightwood Road, Buxton was today jailed for 18 months for the crash which saw his Landrover Freelander come to rest on top of Peter’s foot in the field.

Reece was also slapped with a four-and-a-half year driving ban after pleading guilty last month to causing serious injury by dangerous driving. He will have to take an extended retest before he is eligible to drive to drive again.

Peter doesn’t remember the crash but witnesses told his brother Stuart, who was at the scene, that the Freelander had been overtaking and weaving in and out of cars as they travelled along the A53 and that the driver was speeding when he lost control

Following the crash Peter was in a critical condition and had to be put in an induced coma in the field before being airlifted to the Royal Stoke University Hospital while Jamie was airlifted to Manchester Hospital.

Peter was in Intensive Care for two weeks and needed surgery after suffering eight fractures of his right leg and was in the Royal Stoke University Hospital for around 6 weeks before being transferred to Haywood Hospital in Stoke. He also suffered a stroke resulting in facial nerve damage, blurred vision and an inability to blink.  His right arm was numb.  He had also damaged a disc in his back. 

Over the past 18 months Peter has had to see a speech therapist, physiotherapist and initially used wheelchairs and crutches to get around.

Peter, who is married with four children aged 15-23, said: “I’m lucky to be alive but I will probably have problems for the rest of my life. I can’t eat, speak or walk as I did before the crash and have to rely on other people, mostly my family to help me all the time.

“Jamie has also suffered considerably as he has tried to recover from having both legs broken.

“I am relieved that Reece has been handed a custodial sentence and hopes it acts as a warning to others who drive irresponsibly that their actions have consequences, not only for those who happen to be in their line of fire, but for themselves.”

Jamie was initially treated at Manchester Children’s Hospital where he underwent a nine-hour operation before being transferred to the Royal Stoke University Hospital where he has undergone further surgery. He has suffered deep cuts to his right knee needing stitches as well as fractures to his right femur and a fracture to his left femur both of which needed rods inserting and a dropped foot due to nerve damage. The growth plates in his right leg have been damaged and Jamie will need further surgery to lengthen that leg.

Irwin Mitchell has secured an admission of liability from the insurers for Mr Reece’s vehicle who are now funding specialist rehabilitation for both Peter and Jamie in the form of physiotherapy, gym memberships and, for Peter, speech and language therapy.

Expert Opinion
“This was a very serious incident which has had a life-changing impact on both Peter and Jamie. They face a long recovery battle and we are helping them to access the support and rehabilitation they need.

“We see first-hand the consequences of dangerous driving and the impact it has on the victims of crashes on the roads. I hope that Reece’s sentence today serves as a strong lesson to others that reckless behaviour will not go unpunished.”
Louise Morgan, Associate Solicitor