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Fatal crash driver 'should have had license suspended at the time'

William Payne failed to disclose that he suffered from recurring blackouts and fainting episodes on his DVLA form.

Funeral: Mhairi Convy (left), pictured with Laura Stewart

The driver of a Range Rover who knocked down and killed two students should have had his license suspended at the time of the crash because of his medical history, a fatal accident inquiry has heard.

William Payne failed to disclose that he suffered from recurring blackouts and fainting episodes on his DVLA form.

Payne was driving his 4x4 on December 17, 2010, down North Hanover Street in Glasgow city centre, when he collided with Mhairi Convy, 18, and Laura Stewart, 20.

He also injured Mark Hopwood, 39, who was thrown on to the road but survived.

Dr Gordon Duff examined William Payne five months before the fatal crash.

He told the inquiry he was assessing the 50-year-old on his competency to continue holding an HGV driving licence.

A particular section of the DVLA form requires drivers to disclose any episodes of unconsciousness or blackouts in the previous five years. Mr Payne said there had been none.

Dr Duff explained that the onus is on the driver to reveal any information that might affect their ability to drive.

Referring to motorists who suffer blackouts, he said: “When you examine the individual, you won’t find any abnormality, they appear to be normal between episodes.”

Procurator fiscal depute Jim Graham, put to the witness that: "If blackouts were flagged up DVLA would have pursued that?" Dr Duff said: "Absolutely." He added: "I had nothing to inform DVLA about."

The inquiry heard that Mr Payne has suffered a number of recurring blackouts and fainting episodes which had seen him admitted to hospital.

In the five years before the fatal crash. These had occurred at home and in various public locations including at a veterinary practise, in his doctors surgery and at the A&E department.

The inquiry was told that Mr Payne was so anxious about his health that he had produced a doctor's letter supporting his unsuitability for jury duty in July 2009.

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