Tyne & Wear

Washington death-crash lorry driver's HGV 'had no defects'

John Terence Robinson Image copyright Northumbria Police
Image caption John Robinson died at the scene of the crash on the A19 in County Durham

A lorry driven by a man accused of causing the death of another motorist had "no defects", a court has heard.

John Robinson, 24, from Peterlee, died when his car hit the back of Marcel Balan's stationary HGV on the A19 at Washington last March.

Mr Balan, 57, from Barnsley, had been given a company safety induction in Romanian because he speaks no English, jurors were told.

He denies causing Mr Robinson's death by driving dangerously or carelessly.

At the time Mr Balan, a Romanian national, was working for Birmingham-based transport company TLP Haulage.

Translated safety manual

Linda Long from the firm told the jury at Newcastle Crown Court "no defects" were reported on Mr Balan's lorry before he set off to deliver for a national coffee chain in Sunderland.

He had received his company safety induction from another employee, Lucian Paduraru, who is also from Romania, she said.

Mr Paduraru earlier told the jury he had translated the entire induction book from English into Romanian for Mr Balan.

Miss Long said Mr Paduraru's understanding of English was sufficient to do this.

The court has heard Mr Balan had stopped his lorry on the southbound A19 because he had missed his exit for the A1231.

Mr Balan, from Cope Street, Barnsley, is charged with two counts of causing death by dangerous driving and one count of causing death by driving without due care and attention.

The trial continues.

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