December 12 2013 Latest news:
Monday, October 21, 2013
Harsh steering is believed to be the cause of a crash which led to the deaths of a teenage driver and his friend, an inquest has heard.
Today inquests were held into the deaths of Macauley Clements, 16, of Carpenter Close, Ixworth, and 19-year-old Adam Weller, who had grown up in Ixworth, but had moved to Weeting, near Brandon.
Macauley was a passenger in a BMW driven by Adam, of Hereward Way, which came off the A14 eastbound at Bury St Edmunds and collided with a tree on January 24 this year.
Adam died at the scene of the crash and Macauley died in Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, the following day.
Speaking at their inquests, which were held together, accident investigator Pc Jeff Cribb said: “In my view the cause of this crash was some harsh steering from the driver, from Mr Weller, when he moved his vehicle from lane two - the outside lane - to lane one.
“This significant action was just inappropriate for the conditions and the speed which was being travelled and unfortunately with this action and the lack of the DSC (Dynamic Stability Control) it appears the BMW car started to potentially come out of control.”
CCTV footage had shown the BMW weave in lane one before it left the road, colliding with a “substantial” tree.
Pc Cribb said Adam may have been trying to recover from steering too harshly in the first place or may have been trying to show off and chose to steer that way.
“I’m unable to say from the physical evidence which reason there was for the weaving,” he said.
He added Adam may have possibly been trying to undertake his friend - Macauley’s brother Aaron - who was driving a Fiesta.
He said attempts to regain control without the assistance of the DSC - or traction control system - was “futile”.
He added many vehicles did not have a traction control system, but it was another safety system.
Pc Cribb said it had not been possible to accurately calculate the speed the BMW had been travelling at, but added: “I do think it’s reasonable to suggest the speed was towards the upper end of what might be expected on a dual carriageway road.”
Toxicology tests had shown there was no evidence Adam or Macauley had taken drugs or alcohol.
There was also no evidence Adam was distracted by his mobile phone.
Assistant Coroner Dr Dan Sharpstone recorded a verdict that Adam and Macauley had died as a result of a road traffic collision.