Fatal drink drive crash

Daniel Hargill, 40, was killed in the accident in Woolley on October 2011
Daniel Hargill, 40, was killed in the accident in Woolley on October 2011

A MAN who was more than four times over the drink driving limit died instantly when he lost control of his car and crashed into a tree, an inquest heard.

Daniel Hargill died aged 40 on New Road, Woolley, on October 2 last year.

The former Kettlethorpe High pupil had also hit a car carrying two women and a young child when his car veered onto the wrong side of the road the hearing was told.

In a statement, Catherine Browne said she had been travelling with her mother and daughter after picking her daughter up from a party.

She said: “Suddenly from nowhere a silver car appeared in the road in front of me, travelling in the opposite direction at incredibly high speed.

“I steered sharply to the left to avoid the car but couldn’t go further because there were railings.”

The hearing was told Mr Hargill had glanced along the side of Ms Browne’s car and taken the door off, but none of the passengers were harmed.

Mr Hargill’s car then hit a large oak tree further down the road where it burst into flames.

A postmortem examination concluded he had died instantly from internal injuries sustained by the impact of the crash.

Giving evidence Dr Georgina Real confirmed that the level of alcohol in Mr Hargill’s blood was 350mg per 100mls – more than four times the legal limit of 80mg per 100mls.

In a statement read out in court, friend Sharon Kahan said he had been to her house for a barbecue that day.

She said Mr Hargill had brought a bottle of wine but could not say if he had been drinking.

Mr Hargill’s mother, Celia Dransfield, said in a statement that her son had battled a drink problem for several years.

He had also been taking anti-depressants following his divorce earlier that year.

Recording a verdict of accidental death, coroner David Hinchcliff, said: “Daniel should not have been driving that afternoon.

“He had a substantial amount of alcohol in his blood that would have caused, in my view, impairment to his concentration. And that would have been a significant reason why he lost control of his car in the way he did.”