A U.K. Firefighter has admitted causing the death of a farmer who was crushed to death by a herd of cows after they were startled by fire apparatus sirens. WTF!!?
Tragic? Yes. Criminal? Come on!
It appears that FF Julian Lawford, 49, really had no choice but to plead guilty today to the incredible charge of causing the death of Farmer Harold Lee by careless driving. Farmer Lee, 75, was sadly trampled to death by his own cows as he walked them along a country road near his home.
FF Lawford was due to stand trial accused of manslaughter by gross negligence but admitted the lesser charge, which was accepted by the prosecution. The defending attorney told the court: "Such a plea reflects that he drove his fire engine forward with its lights flashing with the herd in front of him, which caused them to act as they did, causing the death."
The FF turned off his flashing blue lights and siren, but then turned them back on again after the cows failed to disperse enough to let the truck through as they were responding to an emergency call. FF Lawford, who will not receive any jail time for the offense, has been suspended indefinitely by Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service. As you may remember, the incident happened on a rural road in August last year when the farmer was moving a herd of 100 dairy cows from a field toward their milking barn. He was airlifted to hospital with serious head and chest injuries and died six days later.