Mum's joy as horror smash cabbie is no longer on the road

A mum who launched a campaign to keep a danger cabbie who injured her daughter from the roads is claiming a victory after he failed to renew his license

Thursday, 3rd November 2016, 5:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 16th November 2016, 3:39 pm
Parents Lisa Orrick and Chris Bootes daughter Jessica Bootes.

Amir Azad, of Lilac Avenue, South Shields, was the subject of a 850-name petition to have his licence removed by Newcastle City Council.

Azad was at the wheel when his vehicle ploughed into back of Jessica Bootes’ family’s car on the A194 near Lindisfarne Roundabout, in Jarrow in March 2014.

Taxi driver Amir Azad leaving South Tyneside Magistrates Court

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The youngster, now seven, spent 11 days in a coma and had to have the left side of her skull removed, and suffered paralysis down the right side after the five-car collision.

Azad, was fined £250 and given six penalty points at South Tyneside Magistrates Court and South Tyneside Council later revoked his taxi licence.

But last month it was revealed he had secured a new licence with Newcastle City Council and was working as a taxi driver.

Jessica’s mum Lisa Bootes then launched an online petition urging Newcastle City Council to rethink their decision.

Jessica after the crash.

However, Mr Azad’s annual license was up for renewal last Tuesday but he chose not to - meaning he is now no longer employed as a taxi driver in the city

Lisa, from Harton, South Shields, said: “I am pleased he is no longer able to offer the public a service.

“He never should have been driving a taxi again in the first place.

“I am also so grateful to the community who supported my petition and took the time to sign it.”

Taxi driver Amir Azad leaving South Tyneside Magistrates Court

She added: “I said I would not let this rest for as long as I had breath left in my body and I haven’t.”

A Newcastle City Council spokeswoman said: “Mr Amir Azad elected not to renew his Newcastle City Council Private Hire Driver’s Licence.

“The licence lapsed on Tuesday, November 1 2016, so therefore Mr Amir Azad is no longer a licensed driver with the authority.”

Jessica, who attends Bamburgh School in Horsley Hill, South Shields, now has a fear of travelling in cars following the crash.

Jessica after the crash.

Mrs Bootes said: “She can’t cope with being in a car for more than 10 minutes.

“She doesn’t feel safe. I get panic attacks too and can’t drive long distances.

“That’s why I was so determined to carry on with my fight. Our lives have been changed forever.”

Mr Azad was unavailable for comment