On Tuesday 19 June 2018, two separate incidents were reported in Campbelltown where cars had crashed into shops.

In the first incident, the car crashed into a computer cartridge shop. Although there were customers and staff in the shop, no one was injured and the driver of the vehicle was said to have been taken away for a ‘mental health assessment’. The second incident involved a car driven by a 72 year old into a pharmacy. In that incident apparently two pedestrians on the footpath were injured but no one in the shop was hurt.

The NSW Government’s motor accident compensation scheme provides statutory benefits (including treatment and lost income support) to almost all people injured in car accidents. This includes drivers who are at fault (probably the driver of the second car), their passengers (his wife) and pedestrians. The customers in the shops would also be entitled to statutory benefits for their injuries (including any psychiatric injury such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder experienced as a result of the shock of being involved in the incident). The staff in the shops would be covered by and receive statutory benefits under the NSW Government’s workers compensation scheme.

The driver of the first car would probably be entitled to statutory benefits for his accident related injuries but not for any underlying mental health condition, if that is what caused him to crash his car into the computer cartridge shop. If anyone had been killed or injured as a result of that first crash, it does not matter whether the accident was caused by a deliberate act as opposed to negligence, and statutory benefits would be payable. The only deliberate act that prevents anyone from recovering any benefits at all under the NSW Government’s motor accident compensation scheme is an act that is reasonable to characterise as an act of terrorism.

If you or somebody you care about has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, you may be entitled to compensation. For more information, and to arrange a free, no-obligation assessment of your claim, please call Stacks Goudkamp on 1800 25 1800, or alternatively make an online enquiry.

Written by Belinda Cassidy.

Belinda Cassidy holds the position of Special Counsel at Stacks Goudkamp. She had previously held the position of Principal Claims Assessor at the State Insurance Regulatory Authority (SIRA) for 18 years, and currently holds an appointment as a Claims Assessor under the Motor Accidents Compensation Act.

For more information about the incidents discussed in this blog, please click here.