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Thread: Fatal accident Day 3

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010

    Default Fatal accident Day 3

    Experts differ over death crash distance
    A ROAD accident expert has disagreed with his police counterpart over the distance a motorcyclist would have been visible to a van driver accused of causing his death.
    The police investigator, Neil Robinson, previously told Anthony Palmer’s trial, at Wick Sheriff Court, that the Suzuki 1000 sports motor cycle should have been visible to the accused for 500 metres at Borrowston.
    The bike being driven north by Brent Larnach a 28-year-old offshore worker, from Mid-Clyth, ran into the side of Palmer’s van as was turning right, into the access to the house he was building.
    Mr Larnach died at the scene of the accident on a straight stretch of the A99, on April 28, last year.
    Constable Robinson told the court that the motorbike should have been visible to Palmer for 500 metres when he commenced his turn, even if Mr Larnach was speeding.
    The constable concluded that it seemed “highly likely” that the accused was responsible for the accident.
    However, the independent expert, Craig Stewart, disagreed on the distance factor, yesterday.
    Based on his own on-the-spot assessment, at the crash scene, Mr Stewart said that Palmer, 57, would have had only a partial view of the bike at 400 metres with full visibility at 345 metres.
    The witness agreed with defence solicitor that if Mr Larnach had been bent over the handlebars of his bike, in the normal manner, it would make him less visible.
    However, cross-examined by David Barclay, prosecuting, Mr Stewart agreed that the fact Mr Larnach was wearing a predominately white helmet would tend to have made him “more capable of being seen.”
    The expert added that, although witnesses had estimated that Mr Larnach had been travelling in excess of the 60mph speed limit, it was not possible to calculate an accurate figure in the absence of road marks such as skids.
    Palmer, a gas fitter, of 11 Malcolm Street, Wick, pleads not guilty and has claimed that he had made the usual visual checks before starting his turn, and had not observed the motorbike, which he said was travelling “well in excess of the speed limit”, until it was upon him and there was nothing he could do to avoid the collision.
    The defence has closed its case and the jury is expected to retire to consider its verdict, tomorrow.

    Last edited by Bill Fernie; 07-Sep-13 at 23:27.

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