News: Tribunal judge drowned after satnav error
A tribunal judge was drowned alongside his dog when his wife drove into a ford swollen by heavy rains., an inquest has heard.
Judge Jonathan Gammon, 52, was travelling with his wife Priscilla Turner 55, and their dog to Thornfield Park Hospital in April this year, when shedrove into the ford across the river Enborne, at Headley in Hampshire. She was following the directions of their satnav system.
Mrs Turner told the court: “I remember driving into the water but the water looked deceptive to me, it just looked quite shallow. The next thing I recall was water coming into the car. I do not recall whether the car was stationary or was moving. I do recall Jonathan trying his window and it wouldn’t open, he tried the door and it wouldn’t open. I recall him calling the emergency services and he was getting quite frightened.”
She added: “The next thing I recall is standing on the bank and looking down on the submerged car.”
Mrs Turner said she had no recollection of escaping the car, and had until recently believed that she was rescued.
She told a passer-by, who was walking her dog: “Oh my god, my husband, my dog, what happened? Please tell me it’s a dream.”
Andrew Bradley, the North Hampshire Coroner, recorded a verdict of accidental death, telling Mrs Turner: “What you drove into was quite extraordinary….it’s an appalling set of circumstances…”
Photo of the River Enborne by David Buttery
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Marilyn Stowe is the senior partner in Stowe Family Law, which has offices in Yorkshire, Cheshire and London. With more than 30 years’ experience handling divorce cases and family law proceedings she is regarded as one of the most formidable and sought after divorce lawyers in the UK. In 2012, Marilyn became one of the first solicitors to qualify as a family law arbitrator.
All persons mentioned in the scenarios are fictitious: details have been deliberately changed in order to protect identities and other confidential circumstances of my clients. All advice and information on this blog including posts written by guest authors, is given only as a general guide to the operation of the law on the date of publication. Readers must place no reliance whatsoever on the content of this blog and must always obtain their own legal advice. Marilyn Stowe, Stowe Family Law LLP and guest authors accept no liability whatsoever arising as a result of reliance upon its content.
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