Mum devastated by insurance claim

Paul's mother Rhona Reid
Paul's mother Rhona Reid

A grieving Aboyne mother, who lost her son in a car crash two months ago, has spoken of her “utter disgust” after Aberdeenshire Council claimed off his insurance for clear-up work following the accident.

Heartbroken Rhona Reid was coming to terms with son Paul’s death when she received a phone call last week from his insurance company informing her of the council’s claim.

I was coming to terms with my son’s tragic death and then I get a phone call saying this

Rhona Reid Mother

Speaking exclusively to the Piper, Mrs Reid, 49, said: “I’m utterly disgusted. I was coming to terms with my son’s tragic death and then I get a phone call saying this.

“I am so upset. I think it is shocking, this news has put me back to square one. This is so unfair.”

Paul, 24, and Grahame Ellis, 32, both from Aboyne, died when their car hit a tree on the A93 near Aboyne Loch Caravan

Park in April. Paul was driving the red Volkswagen Golf and his friend was the front seat passenger.

The tragedy shocked the local community with tributes being paid to both men.

Mrs Reid, a care assistant, said: “When I got the call I was taken back. It was so insensitive under the circumstances and it has knocked me for six.

“I have just returned to work and got myself back on track as much as you can do and this has really set me back.

“My family are absolutely disgusted as well. They say it’s the last thing I need.”

Mrs Reid said everyone had been extremely supportive since the tragedy but she admitted that it was still painful for her to pass the scene of the accident that claimed her son’s life.

Head of Roads and Landscape Services, Philip McKay, said: “Any accident is undoubtedly traumatic for those involved, which is why it’s important to note that we don’t approach the individual or their family directly to claim back costs. Instead, these matters are discussed with the insurer.

“This is one of the reasons drivers have to be insured to be legal on our roads – so that taxpayers and individuals are not left footing the bill for damage or injury caused by others.

“Following an accident such as this, where the road is damaged, it’s important to repair it to maintain safety for other road users.

“Councils do not have unlimited funds for this purpose.”