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Tragic father-of-three ‘in no way to blame’ for fatal crash

06:30 04 April 2014

Tim Edwards

Tim Edwards

Archant

A father-of-three killed in a head-on collision near Thetford should bear no blame for the crash which caused his death, a coroner said.

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Timothy Edwards died when his VW Golf collided with a car coming in the opposite direction on the wrong side of the A134 Bury Road at around 6am on December 3, 2012.

Former driving instructor Darius Gelezauskas, 46, the driver of the other car, was jailed for 14 months and banned from driving for two years in January after he admitted causing death by careless driving in the crash near Barnham Cross Common.

At an inquest in Norwich yesterday, coroner Jacqueline Lake reached a conclusion that Mr Edwards, of Olle Close, Bury St Edmunds, had died as a result of a road traffic collision.

Offering her sympathies to his family, who were unable to attend, Mrs Lake said: “Mr Edwards was in no way to blame for what happened and the evidence is that he was driving appropriately.”

The inquest was told that the road was wet at the time of the crash and, though it was dark, visibility was good.

Presenting the police report into the crash, Sgt Andy Hood said Gelezauskas, 46, had initially told officers in interview that torrential rain had reduced visibility to “two or three metres ahead”.

However, that did not tally with accounts from eyewitnesses, who said it had merely been spitting with rain, said Sgt Hood.

Gouges on the road indicated the Audi driven by Gelezauskas, of Portal Close, Barnham, had been less than 40cm from the verge of the Thetford-bound lane – the wrong side of the road – at the moment of impact.

Sgt Hood added that Gelezauskas had collected a colleague to take him to work but so far “has been unable to account for why his vehicle was on the wrong side of the road at the moment of impact”.

In a statement released after his death, Mr Edwards’ family paid tribute to the former engineer.

They said: “Tim was a much loved husband of Julie, father to Sarah, Maria and Terry, brother to Terry and devoted granddad to Mia. He was a sociable character, well-known in town through both his love of real ale and his days as a rhythm guitarist with Tutch and later Nelson’s Column.

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