Crash driver had suffered strokes

PUBLISHED: 12:24 26 January 2006 | UPDATED: 20:19 03 May 2010

A MAN who died in a car crash which killed another driver had been suffering from mini-strokes in the lead-up to the accident in St Albans, an inquest heard. John Busani's GP, Dr Mark Brownfield, told the Herts coroner that the 73-year-old had come to see

A MAN who died in a car crash which killed another driver had been suffering from mini-strokes in the lead-up to the accident in St Albans, an inquest heard. John Busani's GP, Dr Mark Brownfield, told the Herts coroner that the 73-year-old had come to see him after experiencing a couple of mini-strokes just over a month before he was killed on Hemel Hempstead Road when his car collided with one carrying John Darrington and his family. Both Mr Busani, from Kings Langley, and Mr Darrington, aged 65 from Hemel Hempstead, died at the scene of the accident near the Bluehouse Hill roundabout at about 9.45pm on April 24 last year. Dr Brownfield said that Mr Busani was seen by one of his colleagues on March 30, just over a week since the first attacks, when he may have admitted to having further strokes. On the first occasion he had suffered from numbness in the right side of his face and his right hand and he had also had speech problems. The symptoms of a mini-stroke are resolved within 24 hours but the doctor said that he would recommend that a patient did not drive for 28 days after the episode and for longer if they had had multiple strokes. Pc Roy Ward, a crash-scene investigator, said that the Nissan Micra which Mr Busani was driving towards Hemel Hempstead appeared to have moved over into the path of Mr Darrington's car. Pc Ward said: "It fits our profile of intoxication, fatigue or tiredness, some sort of distraction and the final thing is some kind of medical episode." He added that drugs or alcohol could be ruled out as Mr Busani's blood and urine samples had come back negative. It was estimated that the Nissan was travelling at 63mph and Mr Darrington was doing 39mph at impact. The force of the crash flipped Mr Darrington's car onto the grass verge. His wife Julia and his sister Mary Towner, whom he was driving back to her home in St Albans, were trapped inside the wreckage of the car. His two daughters, 13-year-old Sophie and 18-year-old Stephanie were able to crawl free from the car with the help of passing motorist Tommy Robinson and his friend Jason Oselmo. Mr Robinson had been driving behind Mr Darrington's car when he lost sight of it briefly and saw what he described as a Catherine wheel of sparks. He then came across the two cars and stopped to help. He said: "I went over to the car on the right and there wasn't any noise coming from there and I was pretty sure that he was dead. I heard some noises coming from the other car so I went to them." He called an ambulance and luckily a fire engine on its way back to St Albans from Hemel Hempstead happened to be driving past at the time and was able to start freeing the people trapped in the cars. The coroner recorded a verdict of accidental death on both men. Mr Darrington's wife, Julia, said: "The past nine months have been a very traumatic time for my children and I and now we have to try to rebuild our lives after the tragedy of losing John.

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