Mum had four beers before crash that hurt children

A TOOWOOMBA woman has been fined $1500 for driving an old farm utility on a property with two children in the tray, one of whom was seriously injured when the ute crashed.

The 38-year-old woman, who is not named to protect the identity of her 12-year-old daughter, told the two children she would take them for a drive around the Lockyer Valley property and told them to get in the back.

However, when a dog and horse approached the utility as she drove, the woman panicked and lost control of the vehicle which went down a slope and into a barbed wire fence, Toowoomba Magistrates Court heard.

The barbed wire had lifted up over the vehicle's cabin and across the tray, striking the woman's 12-year-old daughter in the throat, police prosecutor Julia Wheaton told the court.

The woman called 000 and the girl was taken to Toowoomba Hospital where she remained for some time for treatment.

The woman later told police the utility had column shift gearing and she had trouble reaching the pedals because the seat couldn't be moved forward.

She admitted to having four beers at lunch but the incident had occurred late in the afternoon and she believed she was right to drive, Senior Constable Wheaton said.

The woman pleaded guilty to a charge of negligent acts causing harm.

Her solicitor Brad Skuse said his client felt badly about the incident and had been receiving counselling since. She had no previous convictions.

Fortunately, the child had sustained no significant injury and she and her mother remained on good terms, he said.

Magistrate Bruce Schemioneck fined the woman $1500 and disqualified her from driving for the mandatory six months.


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