Motorcyclist died after losing control of his bike

Norfolk's coroner Jacqueline Lake.
PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY Norfolk's coroner Jacqueline Lake. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY

David Bale david.bale2@archant.co.uk
Tuesday, December 17, 2013
1:39 PM

A motorcyclist died when he lost control of his bike and it collided with a mini-bus on the B1108 near Watton, an inquest heard.

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Robert Muggridge, 42, from Puddledock Farm, Great Hockham, died at about 6pm on July 13, yesterday’s Norwich inquest was told.

Investigating officer Pc Shane Schucroft referred to statements given by Mark Jones, the driver of the 17-seater minibus, and his front seat passenger, Thomas Batikaikai, who are both members of the armed forces.

The minibus was en route to Bodney camp and Mr Jones, in his statement, said that at the approach to an S-bend, on the road at Ickburgh, he noticed a motorcycle coming in the opposite direction.

He said it was “out of control and wobbling, and that it appeared to be going too fast for the bend”.

“The motorcycle collided with the front of our minibus. There was a bang and then the air bags went off,” he added.

Mr Batikaikai said in his statement that he believed the bike was travelling too fast, and said there was nothing Mr Jones could have done to avoid the collision.

Pc David McIllwan had finished work and was travelling in his car behind the minibus.

He told the inquest: “I saw the motorcycle fishtailing and swerving and lose control.

“The motorcyclist had his arms and legs off the cycle as if he were trying to disembark from it. The minibus driver could not have done anything to avoid contact.”

A post mortem examination was carried out and the cause of death was given as multiple injuries due to a road traffic collision.

Pc Paul Cant, forensic collision investigator, said the motorcycle fell onto its nearside and crossed into the wrong lane in the path of the minibus.

He said: “The machine was sliding along the road surface prior to the collision with the minibus.

“Why Mr Muggridge lost control of his motorcycle is unclear, but the probable cause was his belief that he was approaching a left hand bend at excessive speed.”

In summing up, Norfolk coroner Jacqueline Lake said there was no independent evidence that Mr Muggridge was travelling too fast for the winding road. She concluded that he died as a result of a road traffic collision.

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