GLASGOW bin lorry crash driver Harry Clarke resigned with immediate effect from his council post just minutes before a disciplinary hearing at which city officials were set to dismiss him.
Mr Clarke, 58, had faced a disciplinary hearing after it was revealed at a Fatal Accident Inquiry (FAI) earlier this year that he misled bosses about his health and a series of blackouts he suffered before the tragedy which left six dead just three days before Christmas last year.
A spokesman for Glasgow City Council said: “Harry Clarke has resigned with immediate effect and is no longer an employee of Glasgow City Council.”
He had been suspended from duty on full pay in August, pending yesterday’s investigation. It is understood he will receive no payout following his resignation.
The FAI into the bin lorry crash on 22 December last year heard that Mr Clarke lost consciousness at the wheel of the council refuse truck.
Erin McQuade, 18, and her grandparents Jack Sweeney, 68, and Lorraine Sweeney, 69, from Dumbarton died from multiple injuries after being hit by the truck.
Stephenie Tait, 29, and Jacqueline Morton, 51, both from Glasgow, and Gillian Ewing, 52, from Edinburgh, were also killed as the lorry travelled out of control along Queen Street and towards George Square before crashing into the side of the Millennium Hotel. A further 15 people were injured.
Speaking about the crash, survivors recently said they could not bring themselves to return to the scene of the tragedy.
Irene McAuley, 18, suffered a broken ankle and lost four teeth that day. She said she couldn’t smile because she felt self-conscious and now has a lisp as a result of her injuries.
Alix Stewart was meeting friends in the square when she was hit by the lorry and dragged underneath it.
The 14-year-old had her ear torn off and suffered several broken ribs and bones as well as injured kidneys and liver.
Sheriff John Beckett QC, who heard the FAI, said he expects to issue his determination by January next year.The Crown Office in Scotland has already decided Mr Clarke should not be prosecuted over the bin lorry crash as it had been a “tragic accident”.
Two families have indicated, however, they intend to pursue a private prosecution against Mr Clarke for dangerous driving based on the assertion that he knew he was unfit to be driving a lorry.