Diabetic driver who killed mother-of-two in head-on crash jailed

David Day was spotted drifting across lanes before crashing in Esme Henderson's car in August 2020.

David Day jailed after killing mother-of-two in head on crash on A75 in Dumfriesshire iStock

A diabetic driver who killed a mother-of-two in a head-on crash has been jailed for more than four years.

David Day was spotted repeatedly drifting across lanes sparking one concerned motorist to immediately dial 999.

The 54-year-old eventually swerved onto the wrong side of the A75 near Eastriggs, Dumfriesshire hitting Esme Henderson in her car.

Ms Henderson, 55, never recovered having suffered a fatal neck injury following the crash on August 5 2020.

Day, of Dalskairth, Dumfries, had been diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in 2016.

But, it emerged “concerns” were later raised by medics about how he managed his condition.

An expert called to complete a report on Day suggested “on balance of probabilities” he had been suffering from low blood sugar levels at the time of the crash.

On Wednesday, former taxi driver Day was jailed for four years and four months at the High Court in Lanark.

He had earlier pled guilty at a hearing in Glasgow to causing death by dangerous driving.

Lord Beckett also banned him from the road for seven years and ten months.

Prosecutor Leanne McQuillan told the hearing last month how a number of motorists were alarmed by Day’s driving that afternoon.

He was initially spotted on the M6 northbound near Cumbria by Fraser Hogg.

Mr Hogg phoned 999 from his van and the call was played in court.

He stated to the operator that the driver of the Volkswagen Golf was “weaving all over the motorway”.

Mr Hogg added: “I don’t know if he is drunk, half asleep or having medical issues.”

At one stage, he said in shock: “Oh, good God.”

The court heard Day was spotted drifting across all three lanes, almost hitting a grass verge and travelling fully on the hard shoulder.

Other drivers then noticed Day as he went onto the A75 including one who had to dodge being struck.

Another had to blast her horn and slam on her brakes.

Niall Anderson followed Day and watched him swerve onto the opposite side of the road.

Ms McQuillan said: “He collided head on with the oncoming car. This was the Nissan Qashqai driven by Esme Henderson.”

Day was said to have shown “no reactions whatsoever” to avoid the smash.

Ms Henderson, a married mother-of-two, died having suffered multiple injuries.

Day was also hurt and had to be airlifted to hospital.

He was quizzed by police in February 2021 and stated: “I am aware I was involved in a fatal road traffic collision.

“I have no recollection of this or the journey preceding.”

Ms McQullian told Lord Beckett about Day’s medical history.

This included a number of hypoglycemic (low blood sugar) episodes being reported in the past.

But, Ms McQuillan added Day’s “compliance” with managing his diabetes was “variable”.

It was said concerns were raised by a nurse, GPs and hospital staff on “several occasions” 

However, Ms McQuillan said it was not possible to say what his blood sugar level was at the time of the crash as it had not been checked.

Day’s QC said the driver had “genuine sorrow and remorse” for what happened.

Barry Smith, defending, said Day believed he knew how to react to the symptoms of a diabetic “hypo”.

But, one professor suggested Day may have been affected by “impaired awareness” said to impact some diabetes sufferers.

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