Cause of fatal crash still a mystery

By Lisa CleverdonA ROAD crash that killed a man is shrouded in mystery after a coroner said there was no explanation for the cause of the collision.Civil servant Gerald Hawkes died on his way home from work when his Renault Clio suddenly veered into the path of an oncoming lorry on the A1065, just outside RAF Lakenheath.

By Lisa Cleverdon

A ROAD crash that killed a man is shrouded in mystery after a coroner said there was no explanation for the cause of the collision.

Civil servant Gerald Hawkes died on his way home from work when his Renault Clio suddenly veered into the path of an oncoming lorry on the A1065, just outside RAF Lakenheath.

The 44-year-old father, of Peppers Close, Brandon, had to be cut free from the wreckage of his car at just before 1pm on November 11 last year, but nothing could be done to save him.


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Greater Suffolk coroner Peter Dean said witnesses to the collision had seen Mr Hawkes' car swerve violently across to the other side of the road and strike the front of the lorry.

A police investigation into the cause of the accident revealed there had been no mechanical defects on the Clio.

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It concluded a small nail in the rear side tyre would have caused a small puncture at the time of the collision, but was not severe enough to have caused the accident.

Dr Dean recorded a verdict of accidental death at an inquest in Bury St Edmunds yesterday and added: “An accident investigation looked at all the matters in detail, but there is not enough mathematical evidence to come to a conclusion.

“The penetration of the nail could have lowered the tyre pressure, but the deflation is unlikely to have caused a change in the handling of the vehicle.”

He said although the low pressure may have been a contributing factor in any efforts to regain control of the car, the reason for the initial swerve was not known.

lisa.cleverdon@eadt.co.uk

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