Terri Blizzard leaves Ipswich Court on Friday, November 15, 2019. Photo Ross Irby
Terri Blizzard leaves Ipswich Court on Friday, November 15, 2019. Photo Ross Irby

Mystery surrounds cause of tragic fatal car crash

A GRIEVING grandmother has faced an Ipswich court to be sentenced for causing the deaths of her son and his partner in a road crash on a rural road.

The accident left their then 18-month old son orphaned after he escaped the crash with only minor injuries.

This week the court heard police had not been able to identify a cause of the tragedy, although the car had a bald rear tyre.

Defence barrister Geoffrey Seaholme said 52-year old Terri Blizzard had been punished severely as a result of what occurred that day and should not serve any jail time.

In a case submitted by prosecutor Sergeant Chris O'Neill, Ipswich Magistrates Court heard that Blizzard was driving a Holden Commodore west along the Forest Hill Fernvale Road at Vernor just before noon when it failed to take a sweeping bend.

The car went into gravel, then down an embankment, overturning and landing upside down in a paddock.

Blizzard's son Kyran Blizzard, 28 and his partner Kareena Plant, died at the scene.

Blizzard was badly injured and spent two weeks in hospital, the court heard.

A tearful and clearly upset Terri Dianne Blizzard from Lowood pleaded guilty to driving without due care and attention, causing the deaths of Kyran Blizzard and Kareena Plant on Friday July 6, 2018 at Vernor (near Lowood); and driving a vehicle that was not in a safe condition.

The wrecked car was found with the steel belt exposed on its worn rear left tyre, the court was told.

Sgt O'Neill said the charge was part of relatively new state legislation with the maximum penalty a 12-month jail term and fine.

He said the nature of the accident was unexplained but it had serious consequences.

"She has lost two family members that day," he said.

Police sought a jail term of six months immediately suspended for two years.

"Fourteen days in hospital your honour. I was lucky to be alive," Blizzard told Magistrate Brian Kucks when he asked about her injuries.

Mr Seaholme said Blizzard received a disability pension and cared for a 17-year-old daughter.

He said she was remorseful.

"It goes without saying she has been punished to a severe degree," Mr Seaholme said.

Mr Kucks noted the tragic events, saying that in the facts before him there was no explanation as to why the crash happened.

The family had been returning home with their toddler after shopping.

Mr Kucks said Blizzard had been aware of the tyre's condition and knew it needed replacing, but was not aware of the extent to which the steel belt was exposed.

It was not explained if this had been a contributing factor, and no suggestion was made that she had been speeding or driving dangerously.

Mr Kucks noted Blizzard had a virtually blemish-free driving history.

Blizzard was convicted and sentenced to six months jail, immediately suspended for two years.

Her licence was disqualified for 12 months.



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