A Wollongong woman who hit two pedestrians when she ran a red light at a Fairy Meadow intersection last year has avoided a jail sentence.
Brigita Kukulovska was driving her Mitsubishi sedan north on the Princes Highway on July 6, 2018 when she collided with two women as they stepped off the kerb on the corner of Daisy Street.
Both women were thrown to the ground and required hospitalisation, however it was the first woman who received the most serious set of injuries: she was later diagnosed with fractures to her collar and shoulder bones as well as multiple haematomas on her head and face.
The second woman received grazes and bruising.
Meanwhile Kukulovska's vehicle came to a stop about 20m into the intersection.
She and two other passengers in the car at the time were not injured.
Kukulovska was spoken to by police at the scene before being taken to hospital to undergo mandatory blood and urine testing, all of which came back negative for drugs or alcohol.
When interviewed by crash investigation officers, Kukulovska said she believed the lights were orange when she entered the intersection.
However, police obtained CCTV footage of the street which showed the lights for northbound traffic had been red for at least five seconds before the collision. Officers subsequently charged the 49-year-old with with dangerous driving occasioning grievous bodily harm.
During a recent hearing in Wollongong Local Court, Kukulovska admitted being behind the wheel that day and causing the crash but denied her manner of driving met the criminal definition of dangerous.
"This is a case where in my submission the evidence discloses it's not an inattention case, it's a fail to observe case," her lawyer, Jeff David, argued.
"In her mind she says the lights were still orange - clearly it wasn't. It's not a case where she's distracted or looking away. Failing to observe doesn't amount to dangerous [driving]."
However, Magistrate Roger Clisdell rejected the submission and found Kukulovska guilty of driving dangerously.
"In my view the manner of driving, in a built-up area where there's a speed zone for the protection the public means that it's incumbent on a driver to be even more conscious of people being on the roadway," he said.
Magistrate Clidell sentenced Kukulovska to an 18-month community corrections order and disqualified her licence for 12 months, noting she had a clean record and was otherwise a careful driver who "normally complied with the road rules".
"It was nothing other than five seconds of inattention at a time when attention was required to be given."