Legal action is being taken against the Metropolitan Police by the family of an 85-year-old woman who lost part of her foot after being struck by a police van driving on the wrong side of the road.
Great-grandmother Annie Fallon was struck by the van while crossing a road in Cockfosters in July 2010. The van was speeding in response to a 999 call.
Mrs Fallon had part of her foot removed following the accident.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission carried out an investigation into the incident, and found that van driver Pc Daniel Forth has not been trained for emergency response driving. However, the Crown Prosecution Service declined to press charges.
Her family have now started a claim for compensation at the High Court against Pc Forth and the Met. They are seeking damages of up to £300,000.
Mrs Fallon cares for her husband Patrick, 90, who was held as a prisoner of war by Japan during the Second World War.
Their grand-daughter, BBC journalist Genevieve Hassan, said: “It has had a huge impact on her life, she is not the same person. She was fiercely independent before but she can’t do the things she used to do.
“She has been getting prosthetic feet on the NHS but they are not really adequate and are quite painful for her. She needs a proper bespoke one and she can’t get that on the NHS.”
According to court documents, the van was driving at 43mph on the wrong side of the road in a 30mph zone, and the driver “failed to adjust his driving” as he approached a central reservation.
Ms Hassan said: “We’re keen to stress our disappointment at the lack of ‘punishment’ the police officer driving has received, ie none whatsoever.
“We feel there needs to be a change in policing policy to ensure that unqualified police officers are not allowed on the road and when incidents like this happen, they are not given any special treatment.”