Buxton motorcyclist tragically killed at New Smithy was inexperienced, Chesterfield inquest shows

The Coroners Court, Basil Close, Chesterfield.
The Coroners Court, Basil Close, Chesterfield.

A coroner has been told how a Buxton hairdresser died after losing control of his motorcycle on a bend and colliding with another vehicle.

Derbyshire’s Assistant Coroner, James Newman, heard how Tristan Lee was travelling along the A624 at New Smithy following a dentist appointment on 16th November last year.

The 39 year-old, of Matcham Way, Buxton, was seen sliding across the single carriageway road feet first onto the opposite carriageway just as another vehicle approached from the opposite direction.

Hayley Agnew told Mr Newman how she had been walking from a side road to her house at the side of the busy road when she heard the sound of a travelling motorbike and then a crash.

“I turned round,” said Mrs Agnew, “and saw the rider sliding feet first across into the other carriageway.

“A car was coming over the brow of the hill and I just knew he would go under the car but the car had pretty much stopped and he just carried on going until his helmet appeared to stop him.”

John Walker told the court how he had been visiting a customer that morning and was heading up the crest of a hill around a right-hand bend towards Buxton when he saw Mr Lee leaning over on his Kawasaki ZZR 600 bike into the left-hand bend from the opposite direction.

“He said: “I cannot recall seeing the motorcyclist part with the bike. All I know is I saw the bike coming across and I was steering the wheel to the right, hoping he would veer past me but, unfortunately, he did not.”

It emerged during evidence from PC Paul Moorcroft, a Derbyshire Police forensic collision investigator, that Mr Lee had been dragged for more than two metres under Mr Walker’s Nissan Navara and had become trapped.

As a result, paramedics were unable to treat Mr Lee until a fire crew arrived some eight minutes later, at around 1.15pm, and lifted the vehicle off him.

PC Moorcroft told the inquest how it appeared that Mr Lee had been travelling at around the ‘notional maximum speed’ for that particular bend of 42mph.

He said his investigations indicated that Tristan, having only passed his Category A licence four months previously, had approached the bend too quickly and been forced to brake hard, causing the front wheel to lock up.

Tristan was treated for several weeks in hospital until he passed away on 2nd December due to craniocerebral trauma.

Mr Newman returned a verdict of death due a road traffic accident.