Motorcyclist travelled at 90mph before crash
A 20-YEAR-OLD motorcyclist who died after hitting a lorry just outside Saltash had been driving at 90mph, an inquest heard.
Police investigating the morning rush-hour crash told Plymouth Coroner's Court last week that CCTV images showed Adam Smart, from Saltash, approaching the "give way" markings at the Carkeel roundabout at an average speed of 90mph.
Motor patrol constable Marcus Rowe said he had passed the last marker at which he should have started to brake; something officers call "the point of no return".
He added: "He was always going to enter the roundabout without being able to stop at those speeds."
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One witness whose account was read out said the biker had overtaken him "like a bat out of hell" on the way to the junction at around 7.45am on Monday, June 10.
The inquest heard Mr Smart's black Kawasaki Ninja Z600 motorbike appeared to be wobbling slightly and that he was accelerating in an attempt to upright himself.
The former Saltash.net school pupil ended up crashing into the rear of a waste tanker already on the roundabout, sustaining serious head injuries as a result.
The driver of the tanker, Graham Trotter, gave evidence at the inquest saying that the first he saw of the biker was when he saw him and the vehicle lying on the road after the collision.
The deceased's father, David Smart, told Mr Trotter during the proceedings: "We do not blame you."
After the incident, motorists stopped to try and help the motionless young rider.
They removed his helmet, at the advice of ambulance control staff, and lay him on dust sheets as traffic continued around them.
An off-duty policeman, a midwife and a nurse all gave first aid, including CPR and chest compressions.
However, Mr Smart showed no signs of life before paramedics arrived and was bleeding from his head according to eyewitness evidence.
Inspections found the bike and the lorry to be in full working order.
The post-mortem examination found Mr Smart, a duty shift manager, had died from a severe head injury.
Assistant Coroner Andrew Cox recorded the cause of death as the result of a road traffic accident.
In his summary, he said: "I'm going to express the view that the cause was the speed at which Adam was travelling immediately beforehand.
"Adam should have given way to Mr Trotter but because of his speed he went into the back of his vehicle.
"There was nothing Mr Trotter could have or should have done to prevent the accident. He suffered the misfortune of being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
He added: "This was far too young for a young man to have died."