King's Lynn Magistrates' Court. Picture: Ian Burt.

Death crash driver given community order

Monday, December 3, 2012
5.54 PM

A 31-year-old driver who admitted causing the death of a young motorcyclist in a crash near Fakenham has received a community order.

Grant Slater, of Valley Road, Ipswich, was sentenced at King’s Lynn Magistrates’ Court today (Monday) and was banned from driving for a year and ordered to complete 200 hours of unpaid work in the next 12 months.

He had admitted causing death by careless driving at the same court on November 5.

Slater hit Robert Winner’s Honda motorcycle on the morning of January 20 when he joined the A1065 at Weasenham without giving way to oncoming traffic, the court heard at a previous hearing.

Mr Winner, 25, from Sporle, near Swaffham, died at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King’s Lynn from his injuries despite the best efforts of Slater and a passer-by to revive him at the scene of the crash.

Slater was driving a silver Mitsubishi L200 and failed to correctly judge how far away Mr Winner’s motorbike was as he approached the main road from Low Street.

Slater pulled out into the path of the motorcycle, which was unable to stop,

After today’s hearing, Steve Matthews, of Norfolk Police’s serious collision investigation team, said: “This sad case demonstrates how important it is to properly give way and to take your time to consider other road users before crossing junctions. Other witnesses gave evidence to say that the road was clear and the motorbike was visible and being driven safely within the speed limit.

“Slater misjudged the distance and speed of the bike, which had disastrous consequences. I would like to extend my sympathies to Mr Winner’s family at this difficult time.”

At the previous hearing, Alistair Taunton, mitigating, said Slater was genuinely remorseful and was receiving counselling for post traumatic stress.

The court heard he had lost his job and his home as a result of the crash and had been forced to move into a caravan and claim benefits.

In a statement summarised in court, Mr Winner’s family described him as a quiet and friendly young man who had just started to learn to drive.