News State Victoria News Truck driver pleads not guilty in fatal train accident case

Truck driver pleads not guilty in fatal train accident case

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A truck driver accused of killing a Melbourne train passenger by smashing through boom gates into a train has pleaded not guilty as the case heads to trial.

Melville John Bollen, of Narre Warren North, is facing 44 charges after being behind the wheel of a prime mover when it ran through lowered boom gates and smashed into a Metro train in Dandenong South in November 2012.

A 43-year-old man, David Cron, died in the collision and 14 others were injured as the six-car train derailed.

The Melbourne Magistrates Court heard how the truck driver, who was 71 at the time of the crash, told witnesses he must have fallen asleep but he later told police the crash was a complete mystery to him.

Another driver reported seeing him with his head down moments before the crash, but he also braked in the last seconds before the crash.

Magistrate Elizabeth Lambden on Monday committed Bollen to stand trial after hearing from two police officers, a witness, a work colleague and an expert on sleep deprivation.

He will be on bail as the case heads to the Supreme Court for a future trial.

“I’m not going anywhere,” he told the court.

His next court appearance will be on March 12 for a directions hearing.