Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Danger-driver jailed for six years after horror crash kills woman, 23

Raymond Ward has been convinced of causing the death of Claire Anderson by dangerous driving.
Raymond Ward has been convinced of causing the death of Claire Anderson by dangerous driving.

A convicted drink-driver whose dangerous actions behind the wheel of a powerful BMW caused the death of a “lovely” and “bubbly” woman has been jailed for six years.

Raymond Ward, 30, passed his test just three months before his BMW 218 D Sports Coupe collided with Claire Anderson’s purple Ford Fiesta on Orkney.

The High Court in Edinburgh heard how the horrifying smash took place on the A964 road between Kirkwall and Orphir on June 14 2019.

Motorists saw Ward driving the car, which has a top speed of more than 130mph, on the wrong side of the road moments before the collision.

One driver was so alarmed by Ward’s driving in the moments leading up to the crash that he remarked to his passenger ‘Where’s the fire’ when the accused executed a dangerous manoeuvre when overtaking him.

Moments later, Ward’s car drove struck 23-year-old Ms Anderson’s vehicle. Onlookers tried to save her life but she succumbed to her injuries.

Jurors returned a verdict of guilty to a charge of Mr Ward causing Ms Anderson’s death by dangerous driving. 

Claire Anderson died in the crash.

Today, the court heard how Ward has two previous convictions – one of them was for drink-driving, an offence which he committed when he didn’t have a driving licence.

This prompted Judge Fiona Tait to send Ward to prison and give him a 10-year ban from driving.

Passing sentence, she made reference to a victim impact statement which had been provided to the court from Ms Anderson’s relatives.

She had also heard from defence advocate Edith Forrest who told the court of her client’s shame and remorse for his actions.

Judge Tait said: “Ms Anderson was entirely blameless. She was a 23-year-old woman who was a part of a close and loving family.

“Her family are greatly affected by her loss – they found it difficult to provide a Victim Impact Statement but I have read about the impact that her loss has had upon each family member.

“I have listened to everything which has been said to me on your behalf by your counsel. I take into account your expressions of remorse.

“However, this is a very serious offence and I have concluded that a custodial sentence is the only way to deal with this matter.

“The appropriate sentence in this case will be one of six years.”

The aftermath of the crash

Earlier this year, jurors heard how Ward, of Kirkwall, Orkney, had passed his driving test in March 2019. On the day of the collision, he had spent the morning at a job interview at a fish farm.

He left the farm and got back into his car which he had owned for one month.

Witnesses told the car he was in “high spirits” and started listening to music when he started his journey.

The journey between the fish farm and the crash site was approximately three and a half minutes.

Engineer Robert Wetherall, of London, was holidaying in Orkney with his partner Diane Stanning on the day of the crash and saw Ward driving at high speeds.

He said he was driving at 40mph and he estimated that Ward overtook him at about 60mph.

He added: “I remember saying to Dianne ‘where’s the fire?’.”

Mr Wetherall said he lost sight of the BMW soon afterwards. But he told the court that he soon saw smoke.

He added: “I said to Diane, ‘the silly sod’s only gone and crashed.’”

Today, Ms Forrest told the court that Ward is undergoing counselling and told the author of the report of his feelings about the prospect of prison.

She added: “He told the author of the Criminal Justice Social Work Report that he is terrified of a prison sentence.”

Raymond Ward.

Ms Forrest told judge Tait that he has continually expressed remorse for how Ms Anderson died.

She added: “Mr Ward again asks me to express an apology to the family of Ms Anderson.

“It may not be welcome or wanted but he wishes me to express his condolences to the family.

“He feels deep remorse and he thinks about the incident on a daily basis but accepts that it will be minimal in comparison to the feelings of loss that will be experienced by Ms Anderson’s family.

“He also feels a deep sense of shame and it is something that he feels on a daily basis living in a small community.”

However, judge Tait told Ward there was no alternative to custody.

She also spoke to members of Ms Anderson’s family who were present in court.

Judge Tait added: “I express my condolences to the family of Ms Anderson.”

Already a subscriber? Sign in