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Pensioner died on Father's Day after daughter accidentally drove forward

The crash at the Royal British Legion in North Camp killed Ernest Kershaw, 86, as he was on his way into the club for a drink

The scene of the crash at North Camp's Royal British Legion
The scene of the crash at North Camp's Royal British Legion

A pensioner was hit by a car being driven by his daughter in a 'terrible' Father's Day accident in North Camp, an inquest has heard.

Ernest Kershaw died aged 86 from injuries suffered as the people carrier crushed him against a handrail as he walked down the steps. The vehicle continued until it collided with the front entrance of the Royal British Legion club in North Camp on June 16.

Evidence heard at Alton Magistrates' Court on October 9 revealed that his daughter, Christine Kershaw, had returned to the car to straighten it up in the disabled parking space at the top of the steps when she accidentally put it in drive instead of reverse.

Miss Kershaw, who is in her 60s, was tearful as she recalled driving her father, from Farnborough, to what was his regular weekly drink of a shandy and a whisky at the club at 1pm that day.

"I pulled up at the club and my dad was trying to get out of the car almost before I got around," she said. "I passed him his sticks and took him to the top of the stairs and then went back to the car to move it."

She told Hampshire coroner Andrew Bradley she 'did not really know' what had happened next, but believed she must have left the car in gear as she started the engine and found herself lurching forward towards her father.

"I was just trying to get the car away from him, that's all I remember," she sobbed.

Kevin Spiller, a forensic investigator who helped the police with the investigation, said it appeared that a phenomenon known as unintended acceleration syndrome had been a cause for the accident.

The term is used to describe when a driver panics and presses the accelerator pedal rather than the brake in an emergency. Witnesses said they had seen the wheels of the blue Kia Sedona spinning even after the car had come to a halt against the door of the club.

Mr Bradley recorded a verdict of accidental death, adding: "This is a terrible situation for you to find yourself in, and clearly not one that was intended in any way at all.

"My sympathies to you and the family."

For more on this story, see the Farnborough News & Mail, out on Thursday October 17.

 
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