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Excessive speed a factor in death of motorcyclist on A12, inquest hears

PUBLISHED: 18:05 20 August 2018 | UPDATED: 18:05 20 August 2018

Motorcyclist Gavin Chandler, 24, from Tunstall, died following a collision on the A12 at Foxhall on Wednesday, June 21

Motorcyclist Gavin Chandler, 24, from Tunstall, died following a collision on the A12 at Foxhall on Wednesday, June 21

Archant

A Suffolk coroner has urged motorcyclists to stick to the highway code after hearing that excessive speed could have contributed to the death of a 24-year-old man in a crash on the A12 last year.

Gavin Chandler, of Hocket Crescent, Tunstall, died on June 22, 2017, following a crash at 8pm the evening before.

An inquest at Suffolk Coroner’s Court heard Mr Chandler was riding his blue 600cc Yamaha YZF R6 motorbike along the A12 northbound at Foxhall when the crash occurred.

According to other motorists who witnessed the collision, Mr Chandler had overtaken a red Audi A1 moments before at around 80mph while it was overtaking a lorry.

He then tried to pass a Black Ford KA on the outside of lane two, attempting to squeeze through a gap “less than one metre wide” between the car and the central reservation.

His motorcycle collided with the rear of the KA, which was being driven by a heavily pregnant woman, and crashed into the barriers, flipping him into the air.

Mr Chandler landed on the opposite carriageway while his motorcycle crashed into an oncoming Volvo, however the people inside were unharmed.

Coroner Nigel Parsley said Mr Chandler died as a result of multiple injuries.

One witness said: “I have been driving for 15 years and I have never seen anything like it. It left me very wary about driving in the vicinity of motorbikes.”

Following his death, Mr Chandler’s family paid tribute to the “avid mechanic” describing him as “loving, caring and kind”.

Piecing together witness statements and evidence at the scene, forensic collision investigator PC Richard Godden said in his report that it was likely Mr Chandler was driving in excess of the speed limit at the time of the crash.

“80mph is not only likely, it seems to be a conservative estimate,” the report read.

He added: “His choice to ride his motorcycle in apparent contradiction of the highway code was a significant contributing factor to this collision.”

Mr Parsley, who used to ride a motorcycle himself, concluded that Mr Chandler died as a result of a road traffic collision.

He said: “I would urge others riding motorcycles to adhere to advice given in the highway code while riding their machines.”

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