A lorry driver who caused a head-on collision on the outskirts of Winsford has been jailed.
Stanislaw Michalski, 53, from Tuchowicz, Poland, appeared at Chester Crown Court today, (Wednesday 26 July), where he was sentenced to 32 months in prison after pleading guilty to causing serious injury by dangerous driving.
The incident took place on the morning of Monday 19 June 2017 when a black Mercedes lorry, being driven by Michalski, collided head on with a grey Seat Ibiza, on the A533, Davenham Bypass, just outside Winsford.
At the time of the collision Michalski was driving on the wrong side of the road and was intoxicated, with a reading of 78mg per 100ml, more than double the legal limit of 35mg.
As a result of the impact of the crash the Seat Ibiza was thrown off the carriageway and eventually came to a stop on a grass verge at the side of the road. The driver, a 50-year-old woman from Winsford, was left trapped in the car having sustained life changing injuries.
Michalski failed to stop following the crash; instead he continued to drive on the wrong side of the road towards Northwich. He eventually stopped after he was flagged down by a passing motorist who detained him at the side of the road and contacted police.
Officers swiftly attended the scene and arrested Michalski. Meanwhile, colleagues from North West Ambulance Service treated the driver of the car whilst she was being freed from her vehicle by Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service.
After eventually being cut free, the victim was rushed to the Trauma Unit at the Royal Stoke Hospital where she received specialist treatment. She remains in hospital and is currently unable to walk due to the injuries she sustained.
Sergeant Paul Marsh from Cheshire Police said: “As a trained lorry driver, with years of experience, the actions taken by Michalski on the night of the collision were totally deplorable.
“Michalski only admitted that he may have been involved in the crash when he was shown graphic images of the extensive damage to the front of his vehicle. Throughout questioning he had no recollection of the collision itself, nor could he account for why he was driving on the wrong side of the road – stating that he may ‘possibly’ have been asleep at the wheel.
“I would like to take this as an opportunity to pay tribute to the victim in this case. Her life has changed enormously as a result of Michalski’s actions, yet throughout the investigation she has shown immense courage and determination.
“While Michalski’s guilty plea will not turn back the clock, I do hope that the sentence handed to him will provide her with some closure.
“I would like to thank the motorist who stopped and supported the victim following the collision, along with the man who flagged down Michalski – without their intervention I have no doubt that the outcome of this case could have been far worse.”
As well as a 32 month prison sentence Michalski was also banned from driving for 5 years 6 months and will be required to take an extended driving test before he regains his licence.