De Villota's family says it has grounds for legal action against Marussia

Maria de Villota's family believes it has grounds for legal action against the Marussia Formula 1 team after reviewing the report of the accident.

De Villota was seriously injured in after she crashed into one of the team's trucks while testing at Duxford Airfield on July 3rd, 2012.

She lost her right eye in the accident and would later die as a result of the injuries in October of 2013.

Britain's Health and Safety Executive carried out an investigation into the accident, but said last month that it did not feel any further action was necessary.

The family, however, said at the time that it was considering legal action against Marussia in order to avoid further "negligence".

The report stated that de Villota had told her engineers that she could not operate the clutch while the steering wheel was at full-lock, which was the case at the time of the impact against the tail-lift of the truck, which was positioned at eye-level.

According to the report, she attempted to unlock the clutch but nothing happened.

After reviewing the HSE report, de Villota's family said it believed it provides enough information to proceed with court proceedings, should it choose to.

"Last week we received the Health and Safety Executive's report on the accident at Duxford Airfield on 3rd July 2012," said the family in a statement.

"The family considers that the information in the report provides an objective starting point to continue Maria's drive to ensure that such an accident never happens again.

"The report shows that there were a number of irregularities on the day of the accident. The report cites factors such as the questionable position of the lorry and its tail-lift ramp, the lack of logistical and technical information, as well as the lack of some basic safety precautions and driver briefing.

"The report confirms that Marussia's own risk assessment process considered neither the risks posed by the layout of the test facility (including position of the lorry and the tail-lift) nor the risks to Maria from the design of the car.

"The family's lawyers are studying the report in order to identify the next steps that the family may wish to take, including court proceedings."

Marussia, which went into administration at the end of last year, is now racing in Formula 1 under the Manor name. 

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Maria de Villota
Teams Manor Racing
Article type Breaking news