Lawyer sees aftermath of risky driving
PATRICK Kelly is sick of drivers playing Russian roulette on our roads.
The lawyer deals with the fallout from road accidents every day.
Mr Kelly's frustration stems from the statistics - 114 people died in 103 crashes and 13,201 road users were injured in 5873 smashes across the Ipswich City Council area between 2001 and 2013.
The Slater and Gordon compensation specialist represents Ipswich residents who have lost their independence and livelihoods because of someone else's stupidity.
"It can affect every aspect of their lives," Mr Kelly said of the pain and suffering road accidents caused.
"It means for many clients they can't return to work at all.
"They go from being the bread-winner to being reliant on another person's care ... and being dependent for money as well."
Mr Kelly said most accidents resulted from people taking risks.
"The driver at fault may give their version but sometime it's not entirely consistent with what the police might find," he said.
"It's not very often that you hear about them talking of the roads being at fault, rather it's often people driving too fast for the conditions.
"That's a massive issue - people not slowing down."
The compensation process relies on a range of factors including the diagnosis, treatment and impacts of long-term injuries.
"The time for each claim varies but it can be a very long process," Mr Kelly said.
"A couple of years is not unheard of but it generally takes about 12 to 18 months."
Mr Kelly pleaded with road users to make sure they arrived home alive.
"Just stay vigilant," he said.
"Be careful, be mindful of others and take every care possible when driving.
"It only takes a split second and you can change someone's life for the worst and forever."