SOCIAL worker Rachel Smith will be haunted for the rest of her life by the fatal consequences of a simple misjudgement as she drove to work, a court heard.

Accountant Geoffrey Rushton died instantly after her BMW spun out of control and collided head on with his Vauxhall Astra on a remote moorland road.

Blackburn magistrates were told that Smith was still receiving counselling seven months after the accident which happened as she drove to work at Bolton Social Services.

Smith, 26, of Franklin Road, Witton, Blackburn, pleaded guilty to driving without due care and attention.

She was fined £1,000 with £69 costs and had her licence endorsed with seven penalty points.

David Brindle, prosecuting, said at about 8.30am on July 31 last year, Smith was travelling along Belmont Road towards Bolton driving her father's BMW.

Mr Rushton, 46, of Hill Cot Road, Sharples, Bolton, was travelling to work in Blackburn. It was raining at the time. He said that Smith was negotiating a sharp bend and, at the point of the bend, her car went badly out of control crashing into Mr Rushton's car.

"Mr Rushton was killed instantly as a result of his injuries and both vehicles were badly damaged," said Mr Brindle.

Ross Olson, defending, said there was no suggestion that Smith was exceeding the 60mph speed limit.

Her recollection was that she was doing between 45mph and 50mph and as she approached the bend she began to slow down.

"Unfortunately she lost control and you have heard the consequences," said Mr Olson. "My client has expressed her deepest remorse for the events that occurred that morning.

"The memory of this accident will be with her for the rest of her life. She is currently undergoing counselling in an attempt to put this matter behind her but it is in her memory and in her daily consciousness."

He said Smith accepted that the standard of her driving fell below the standard required.

"She appears in court as a result of a misjudgement of the road conditions and not because she was driving aggressively or at a manifestly excessive speed," said Mr Olson. "The consequences will be in your mind when you pass sentence but so, also, should be her conduct."