Josephine - An emotional tribute to a young cyclist
Main article content
“As life moves on, it already is becoming apparent that Josephine is frozen in time”.
These are the emotional words of a man whose daughter – a young, keen cyclist – was killed in a collision in Derby last year.
Josephine Gilbert had been riding along the A52 just off Markeaton Island when she was struck by a HGV that was being driven by an unlicenced driver.
Josephine, who was just 25, died at the scene.
The harrowing incident understandably devastated her family.
Now, Josephine’s dad – Bobby Gilbert – has spoken on camera about how the ripples of that day are still being felt by him and the family.
In the video, Bobby also talks about the lessons he hopes other motorists will learn from his daughter’s death – and how drivers of larger vehicles can protect our more vulnerable road users.
We are releasing the video as a national week of action around commercial and heavy goods vehicles comes to a close.
For the past week, we have joined colleagues in the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency, National Highways and the Office of Traffic Commissioner in highlighting road safety issues with commercial and heavy goods vehicles.
As well as highlighting good practice by van and lorry drivers, our officers have also been carrying out check sites to crack down on unsafe vehicles or loads.
It’s all part of efforts to make sure larger vehicles, and the people behind the wheel of them, are fit for the road and don’t pose a risk to other road users – as has tragically been the case in Derbyshire.
Over the last three years in our county, heavy goods and light goods vehicles have been involved in 730 collisions - resulting in 944 people getting injured and, sadly, 25 of which were fatal.
The man driving the lorry when Josephine was struck had had his licence revoked on medical grounds just weeks before the collision. He is currently serving a 45-month prison term.
For Bobby and the family, the heartbreak of losing Josephine will last a lifetime.
Bobby said: “I’m sure Josephine was aware, by the traffic noise, that there was a big vehicle about to pass her – but there wasn’t even a twitch of the helmet.
“And so, knowing that she knew absolutely nothing, well that is good. But as a person left behind it’s really hard.”