Jane Cannan was walking down a road in Otley in west Yorkshire when an elderly man, who was parking his Land Rover, lost control, mounted the pavement and hit Jane front on, pinning her against a wall.

She was taken to hospital with injuries to her lower back, hip and severe bruising across her midriff. Jane developed a serious haematoma that covered the right side of her lower back to the top of her right leg.

Eight months off work

The swelling from the haematoma was so aggressive it took several months to improve and on her return to work - eight months after the accident – her back was still swollen.

Ongoing symptoms from the crash meant that Jane had to reduce her working hours because she was unable to stand or do physical activities for long periods of time.

Driver made to surrender license

As a result of the accident, the 88-year-old driver had to surrender his driving licence.

Jane said: “For months after my accident, I would only leave my house to go to physiotherapy but even that was a struggle. I wasn’t able to sit down because of the position of the haematoma, so I had to order taxis and lie on my left side to be transported anywhere.

“It was difficult putting clothes on because they were so restrictive and I couldn’t do any household chores. It was a really difficult time.

“I’m pleased I’ve been able to return to work. However, I’ve had to reduce my hours which has had a financial impact on my life. I regularly have flashbacks about my accident but I am determined that what I went through should not force me to end my career.”

Legal help accessed through UNISON

Jane got in touch with her union, UNISON, who instructed Thompsons Solicitors to pursue a claim on their member’s behalf.

John Cafferty, UNISON’s Yorkshire and Humberside Regional Secretary, said: “This was an extremely traumatic experience for our member. We are pleased that we were able to support Jane at this difficult time and to ensure that she received the compensation she deserved for her injuries and her loss of earnings.”

Amanda Dixon from Thompsons Solicitors said: “This case highlights the dangers elderly drivers can pose and raises again the question of a ban beyond a certain age. This gentleman had a hugely powerful car that he was unable to control. It took Jane months to rebuild her life, both physically and psychologically, and she still suffers almost three years on.”