Hailsham man died of ‘heart attack’ after car struck wall in accident

The scene of the crash in April. Photo by Peter Cripps

The scene of the crash in April. Photo by Peter Cripps

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A motorist is believed to have died after suffering a heart attack, an inquest heard this week.

Wayne Puttick, 27, who lived in Golden Cross, near Hailsham, died on April 15 when his Ford Focus struck a wall and overturned into a culvert on the B2124 at Laughton just after 10pm.

Dr Zainab Ali, pathologist at Eastbourne District Geberal Hospital (DGH), said Mr Puttick sustained injuries to his left shoulder, left knee and chest but there were no internal injuries at all.

Mr Puttick, a roofer, was also over the drink-drive limit but the level was not enough to seriously affect his driving, Dr Ali said.

“The only thing I can think of was that it was a cardiac event,” she said, as she told the inquest none of Mr Puttick’s injuries were life-threatening.

Stephen Vinyard, of Laughton, was with his girlfriend heading towards Ringmer when they heard the crash.

At the inquest, held yesterday (Tuesday, August 23), he said: “We heard a skid then a bang. It was like a single car skidding and crashing into something.”

Benjamin Pratt, from Hailsham, was taking his girlfriend home to Brighton, when he came across the scene.

He got out of the car after seeing Mr Vinyard and his girlfriend, thinking they were involved in the crash and asked if they were okay.

In a statement read out at the inquest, Mr Puttick’s mother, Debbie, said: “Wayne was a happy, loving and caring man who would put others before himself. He would change his plans at the last minute to accommodate family and friends as best he could.

“He spent a lot of time in New Zealand, Australia and Japan and returned to the UK in April last year.

“He seemed happy when he came back, spending three months with us in Wales. He worked for a roofing company and worked hard.

“At the weekend Wayne helped his dad with cutting the grass and other odd jobs. Wayne was a keen footballer and enjoyed cricket and occasionally a good night out with the boys.

“Wayne was a fit, healthy and active young man. The whole family is deeply saddened by the loss of Wayne and he is deeply missed.”

Coroner Alan Craze concluded that Mr Puttick died of natural causes.

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