Transplant woman who panicked at speeding ticket asks for more awareness of liver disease

July 19, 2018

A Milford woman suffering from autoimmune liver disease is asking police to better understand her condition after receiving a speeding ticket.

Lucinda Roberts , 33, was horrified to find a letter in early June informing her she had been caught by a camera speeding.

It said she was doing 68mph on the 60mph A46 Sedgeberrow bypass in the West Mercia area on June 4.

The 33-year-old, who had recently got back into driving after a life-changing transplant operation last August, said she panicked.

Struggling to fully understand the four-page form, she paid the £100 fine rather than opt for the speed awareness course.

She said she did not realise three points would be added to her licence.

When she explained her condition to West Mercia Police and asked to change her option, she was told this was not possible.

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Lucinda Roberts’s story on living with liver disease

Ms Roberts said she is still recovering from hepatic encephalopathy, a decline in brain function that occurs as a result of her liver disease .

She is also taking medication to stop her new liver being rejected, and some of the side effects of this are anxiety and depression.

She said: “I’ve been sick for 15 years. For several years, I thought I was going mad because I couldn’t remember things.

“When the liver doesn’t work, toxins go to your brain and cause confusion and anxiety. My new liver is working very well, but I’m taking medication which causes side effects like anxiety and depression.

Lucinda Roberts recently got back into driving after a liver transplant
(Image: Surrey Advertiser / Grahame Larter)

“I’m someone who on the whole functions reasonably normally but I don’t put myself in situations that are complicated because I know there’s a chance I might be confused.

“In all honesty, I should have got someone like my father to fill it out, but I was embarrassed about the fact that I’d been caught speeding.

“To me, it’s a real let down on the part of the police system, but if you make a mistake, it can’t be changed.

“The medication I’m on that makes me anxious didn’t help when I was reading the form. If I could go back in time, I would just take a big deep breath, and tell myself, ‘don’t rush this’.”

Ms Roberts is worried the points on her licence will mean she will be unable to afford the cost of car insurance, and therefore be unable to drive.

“It will affect my ability to go back into the workforce and be a normal member of society.”

In a bid to ensure she and others in her situation are understood, Ms Roberts has contacted South West Surrey MP Jeremy Hunt .

Mr Hunt has since written to West Mercia Police to ask for her request to be considered, says Ms Roberts. The MP was approached for comment.

West Mercia Police said it was unable to comment on this particular case and said it was in direct correspondence with Ms Roberts.

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