Death crash was clearly an accident’
PUBLISHED: 10:48 02 February 2006 | UPDATED: 11:28 04 May 2010
MYSTERY surrounds the death last October of a 17-year-old boy who was killed in a car crash just hours after passing his driving test. Daniel Martyn Parish, of The Orchards, Witcham, died when his red Citroen Saxo left the road in Sutton on October 6. He
MYSTERY surrounds the death last October of a 17-year-old boy who was killed in a car crash just hours after passing his driving test.
Daniel Martyn Parish, of The Orchards, Witcham, died when his red Citroen Saxo left the road in Sutton on October 6. He had passed his driving test at the third attempt earlier that day.
He was driving along Bury Road when, just after taking a left-hand bend, he swerved on to the opposite carriageway, and the car then mounted a grass verge before hitting a tree. No other vehicles were involved.
He was pronounced dead at the scene while his friend Sarah Adams, 17, who was the front seat passenger, suffered serious injuries.
However, at an inquest at Ely Courthouse on Friday, North and East Cambridgeshire coroner William Morris was forced to concede: "There was no real explanation as to why the car swerved. We don't have a clear explanation for what happened, I'm afraid.
"One can only speculate whether inexperience was at the root of what happened. It is clear to me, though, that what happened was an accident."
The inquest heard how Daniel, who had experience of various driving conditions after being taken out on the road by his stepfather Christopher Watson, had driven to Cambridge with Miss Adams, where the pair went bowling.
On their way back, they decided to stop at the Anchor Inn at Sutton Gault to see some mutual friends.
It was on the way to Miss
Adams's home in Steward's Lane, Sutton, that the accident happened at about 10pm.
Miss Adams told the inquest that Daniel had only drunk a soft drink at the pub, and was "taking things carefully" when he set off.
She continued: "We were going along and I thought we saw some lights coming towards us.
"There was a bend to the left and the lights seemed to be right at us and then he swerved."
Another driver saw the vehicle at the base of the tree and called the emergency services.
An examination of the car revealed that it was perfectly roadworthy and an investigation of the scene turned up no further clues as to the cause of the crash.
Daniel had "negligible" levels of alcohol in his blood and was wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash.
Mr Morris recorded a verdict of accidental death.
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