Luton Airport fined after woman killed on crossing

Luton Airport Luton Airport has changed the design of the pedestrian crossing since the death

Related Stories

Luton Airport and a contractor will have to pay £372,595 in fines and costs after a woman died in a traffic accident outside the terminal.

Mary Whiting, 78, of Norwich, was returning from holiday in May 2009 when she was hit by a milk lorry on a pedestrian crossing.

The airport and C-T Aviation Solutions were found guilty of health and safety offences at Luton Crown Court.

The prosecution argued that the crossing was badly designed.

The crossing connected passengers to car parks and drop-off areas.


The court heard Mrs Whiting had crossed the road believing the lorry was stationary, but it then pulled away and crushed her.

The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) brought the prosecution against London Luton Airport Operations Ltd (LLAOL) and C-T Aviation Solutions (C-TAS), which was consulted on the design of the crossing which opened in March 2009.

The HSE said the crossing should have had Belisha beacons, zigzag lines and a stop-line at least 1m from the start of the crossing.

Judge Philip Bartle QC said: "There was a foreseeable risk of injury or death to pedestrians and the seriousness is that LLAOL exposed eight million to nine million visitors a year to that risk."

LLAOL was fined £75,000 with £197,595 costs, while C-TAS was fined £70,000 with £30,000 costs.

Speaking after the trial, Graham Tompkins, HSE inspector, said: "This tragic incident could easily have been avoided had LLAOL taken the proper steps to ensure the safety of vehicles and their passengers at the airport."

The court heard that the crossing had been altered following the death of Ms Whiting and the size and number of heavy vehicles using the road had been reduced.

The two companies were not charged with offences specifically relating to Ms Whiting's death.

In September 2010, the lorry driver Rossano Casagrande, 50, of Fulbridge Road, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, was found not guilty at Luton Crown Court of causing Mrs Whiting's death by careless driving.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

BBC Beds, Herts & Bucks



Min. Night 1 °C

Features & Analysis

  • TricycleTreasure trove

    The lost property shop stuffed with diamonds, bikes... and a leg

  • Boris Nemtsov'I loved Nemtsov'

    A murder in an atmosphere of hatred and intolerance

  • Image of George from Tube CrushTube crush

    How London's male commuters set Chinese hearts racing

  • INDHUJA'Dorky tomboy'

    The Indian who attracted proposals through honesty

Elsewhere on the BBC

  • Audi R8Best in show

    BBC Autos takes a look at 10 of the most eye-catching new cars at the 2015 Geneva motor show


  • Kinetic sculpture violinClick Watch

    The "kinetic sculpture" that can replicate digital files and play them on a violin

Try our new site and tell us what you think. Learn more
Take me there

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.