Motorcyclist dies after Lottbridge Drove crash

A motorcyclist killed in a collision on Lottbridge Drove did not see a taxi stop in front of him in time.

Friday, 31st May 2019, 11:26 am
The collision happened at the Seaside roundabout at Lottbridge Drove (image by Google) SUS-190530-153004001

That’s what an inquest into Bernard Fraser’s death heard at Eastbourne Town Hall on Thursday (May 30).

The 62-year-old painter and decorator, from Hemel Hempstead, had been driving towards the Seaside roundabout when he collided with the back of a taxi on October 10, 2018.

Family members left as the inquest was shown dash cam footage of the collision, filmed from an AA vehicle which had been driving behind.

The inquest was held at Eastbourne Town Hall (Photo by Jon Rigby)

The footage showed the AA van join Lottbridge Drove from the A22 Highfield Link then drive down towards the Tesco roundabout at around 11.45am that day.

Then, while the AA vehicle is in the right hand lane waiting to cross the Seaside roundabout, the recording shows the motorbike driving in the left hand lane before the collision happens.

Carlos Clacio had been driving his Toyota Yaris home from work when he was overtaken on the left hand side by the motorbike.

He said in a statement, “I was in a state of shock, everything happened so quickly. Everyone was driving slowly, including the motorcyclist.”

‘He didn’t have time or space to avoid the collision’

Another witness, Patricia Simmons said, “He obviously didn’t see everybody had stopped. I heard a loud bang...everything spun upwards and forwards.”

PC John Wood, of the forensic collision investigation unit, said, after analysing the dash cam footage, officers found Mr Fraser had been travelling at about 37mph at the time of the collision.

The PC said it was possible the sunlight temporarily affected his eyesight, or Mr Fraser had been distracted by another vehicle’s indication, “Unfortunately he didn’t have time or space to avoid the collision.”

A toxicology report found no alcohol or drugs in Mr Fraser’s system. No one else was harmed in the collision.

Coroner Alan Craze said, “They used to say around half road deaths were motorcyclists. If anything goes wrong you have no protection, that’s the difficulty.

“Very sadly he wasn’t aware of the fact that the vehicle in front of him was stopped. I think that inevitably has to be the cause. I’m not here to be judgemental.”

He concluded Mr Fraser died in a road traffic collision.