An inquest into the death of tragic Andrea Gada, heard the five-year-old stepped into the road when she was hit by a car.
Andrea died in St George’s Hospital, London, on December 17, after the accident on Friday Street the day before.
She had been walking from her school, Shinewater Primary, with her father and brother Victor, to their home in Downland Close.
At around 3.15pm, Andrea was in collision with a blue Ford Fusion, driven by Hailsham woman Janice Curd.
At the inquest on Thursday, at Eastbourne Magistrates Court, Andrea’s father, Wellington Gada, told the inquest they were waiting on the side of the pavement to cross Friday Street, in order to get to Downland Close.
“We waited for a few seconds,” he said. “I looked to the left and right. I saw traffic coming from both sides. Victor shouted “Andrea you do not go into the road alone.” The next thing I heard was the loud bang.”
The inquest heard Andrea had taken “one or two steps” into the road, when she was struck by the car.
Mrs Curd who was driving the car, said, “I noticed some people standing at a drop kerb. A gentleman. I did not notice any children. I was really looking at the road ahead.”
She said she did not see Andrea until the collision occurred.
The five-year-old landed on the pavement, and emergency services were called.
Andrea was airlifted to hospital and died the following day from her injuries.
A statement by a police officer Julian Taylor, said, “Mrs Curd was driving her Ford Fusion. Andrea has simply stepped out into the road in front of her. Andrea’s father who states he was standing at the crossing, said he could not remember whether he was holding the child’s hand.”
However, he said this may not have made a difference to the outcome, as Andrea had only taken a step or two into the narrow section of the road, where there is a pedestrian island in the centre. He said the collision was “unavoidable”.
Police estimate the car was travelling within the speed limit of 40mph.
Wellington described his daughter as “excited” before the incident, as they were going to go to Asda to buy chocolate coins to put in her friends’ Christmas cards.
Coroner Alan Craze said, “It was an appalling, horrifying tragedy, and devastating for Andrea’s whole family. And I think, upsetting for any of the public, in hearing the sad circumstances of this case. This was an awful thing to happen.”
The family, parents Wellington and Charity, and Andrea’s brothers Takura and Victor, said their goodbyes to their “princess” at Kings Church on February 18. This was after a battle with the Home Office, which eventually granted visas for Andrea’s grandparents and aunt to travel to the UK from Zimbabwe for the funeral. After the tragic accident, Wellington said, “We are just devastated, we are in pieces. No amount of words can express exactly how we are feeling.”
Alan Craze recorded a conclusion of road traffic collision.
Don’t miss out on all the latest breaking news where you live.
Here are four ways you can be sure you’ll be amongst the first to know what’s going on.
1) Make our website your homepage at www.eastbourneherald.co.uk/
2) Like our Facebook page at Text to display
3) Follow us on Twitter @Eastbournenews
4) Register with us by clicking on ‘sign in’ (top right corner). You can then receive our daily newsletter AND add your point of view to stories that you read here.
And do share with your family and friends - so they don’t miss out!
The Eastbourne Herald - always the first with your local news.
Be part of it.