Tourist sues after losing unborn baby in tragic crash
A JAPANESE woman working on an Innisfail banana farm is taking legal action against another tourist who was driving a car which crashed, leaving them both fighting for life.
The crash also forced the termination of her unborn child.
Eri Koike was 28 in 2018 when the car she was travelling in with four other tourists rolled on the Kennedy Highway outside Innot Hot Springs.
She and the driver Ryohta Ohtagawa were critically injured and she was later diagnosed with brain damage and spinal injuries.
Tragically, according to documents lodged in the Cairns Supreme Court, her pregnancy also had to be terminated due to concerns about the impacts of the medical procedures she underwent.
Ms Koike, who has since returned to Japan and lives just north of Tokyo, is now suing the driver Mr Ohtagawa and insurer AAI Ltd for just over $920,000
She is claiming his negligence behind the wheel caused the crash.
According to the court documents he lost control of the vehicle which left the road and flipped about 3.40pm.
Ms Koike's legal representative has alleged in the court documents he was driving at excessive speed, failed to exercise "proper care and control" and was driving without due care and attention.
He was charged by police and pleaded guilty to driving without due care and attention - fined $800 and had his license disqualified for three months.
A further three passengers inside the car, all aged between 25 and 30, suffered minor injuries. Ms Koike was on a working holiday visa at the time and had been working as a farmhand in Innisfail.
The court documents said she had intended to return to Japan afterwards and continue working as a wedding planner.
She spent more than a month in Townsville Hospital recovering from the horror crash.
The documents said, along with the brain damage and spinal injuries, she also suffered fractures and facial lacerations, bruising and abrasions.
She has had an inter-cranial pressure monitor fitted, had to wear a lumbar corset and continues to suffer from blurred vision, dizziness, vertigo, memory loss, fatigue and has PTSD.
The amount of the claim is based on past and future economic loss, medical care and general damages.
A court date is yet to be set and neither the driver or insurer have filed any documents in court.
Originally published as Tourist sues after losing unborn baby in tragic crash