A PENSIONER has spoken of her misery and sleepless nights after knocking down a six-month-old baby on a zebra crossing in Brentwood Maureen Williams, 75, admitted careless driving at Basildon
Magistrates’ Court last Wednesday, after crashing into a baby boy in Ongar Road, last November.
The baby, who was being pushed over the crossing in a pushchair by his mother at the time, battled for his life in intensive care at Royal London Hospital after the accident.
He is now thought to be slowly recovering after having lifesaving surgery.
The driver, who is a volunteer for St Francis Hospice, was fined £233 and given six points on her licence.
Speaking days after her appearance in court, Mrs Williams said: “It was a tragic accident, it’s made me terribly upset and I haven’t been sleeping properly.
“Nothing like this has ever happened to me before, I feel terrible.
“I’ve been so worried all these months wondering about the baby and his parents.”
The pensioner, who has no children, but has eight godchildren, explained what happened on the day in November.
She said: “It had been raining nonstop and the road conditions were dreadful.
“I remember seeing the mother and thinking that if I braked hard I’d skid right into her. It was only then I saw the baby, but I didn’t feel a thing and my car doesn’t have a scratch.
“I got straight out of my car and saw him lying in the road with his mother crouching over him, it was awful.”
The tragic accident sparked a campaign by councillors and residents to make Ongar Road, and particularly its crossings, safer for pedestrians and drivers.
Brentwood Council's highways department responded by pledging £33,000 to the cause, which is to be spent on upgrading the visibility of the crossings and junctions, and putting up clearer signs.
Mrs Williams thanked councillors for getting the changes introduced and said she hopes it will prevent other accidents happening.
Russell Quirk, Conservative councillor for Brentwood North, who led the campaign, said: “There have now been seven pedestrian injuries along this stretch of road in the past five years.
“I was recently successful in lobbying for funding to improve pedestrian safety and secured a £33,000 improvement package.
“This was agreed very quickly as testament to how seriously my fellow councillors and officers took this matter.”