South Scotland

Dalbeattie man killed in crash may have had heart attack

Dumfries Sheriff Court
Image caption The hearing in Dumfries was told Mr Penny's car crossed onto the opposite carriageway

A care worker who died in a two-vehicle collision may have had a heart attack before the crash, a fatal accident inquiry has heard.

James Penny, 55, of Dalbeattie, was killed in the accident on the A75 near Castle Douglas in February 2016.

The inquiry heard how his car crossed onto the opposite lane and collided with a van.

His 25-year-old passenger and the driver of the other vehicle involved in the accident were both injured.

The hearing in Dumfries was told the sole cause of the accident was Mr Penny's vehicle crossing the carriageway.

In a statement read to the inquiry, it was stated that he had been a social worker with Dumfries and Galloway Council.

Collision noise

He had been working from Dunmuir House at Castle Douglas and was returning there with a service user when the accident happened.

A statement given by van driver Steven Jackson was read to the inquiry.

"I was driving along the road to Dumfries...next thing I knew was the noise of a collision," it said.

"I haven't a clue as to how the collision happened - I remember sliding down the banking and coming to a stop, then it was the pain."

A post-mortem examination revealed that Mr Penny had been suffering from a heart condition.

It concluded : "It may be that he had a primary cardiac event due to heart disease which led to the collision."

The cause of death was given as heart disease and abdominal injuries. Sheriff Brian Mohan returned a formal verdict.

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