Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting ECHONEWS to 80360, or email us »
Biker was speeding before fatal accident
6:00am Thursday 20th September 2012 in News
A MOTORCYCLIST was breaking the speed limit when he lost control of his bike and hit a lamp post, an inquest heard.
Scott Spinks, 34, of The Knares, Laindon, died on January 28 while riding his black Triumph motorbike along Laindon Link towards Basildon .
An inquest into his death yesterday heard he overtook two vehicles at speed and got into difficulty almost straight away.
PC Alan Barlow, a forensic collision investigator at Boreham, led the investigation into what happened. He calculated Mr Spinks’ speed was between 64mph and 73mph when he lost control – the limit in Laindon Link is 40mph.
He said: "The loss of control may have been due to high-speed weave which, if uncorrected by the rider, can develop into a tank-slapper, which is a very high speed oscillation of the handle bars, it gets very intense.
"It only occurs at high speed and can be caused by tyre pressure, excess speed or a change in the rider's weight distribution over the fuel tank.
"The speed of overtaking, coupled with a change in weight distribution, may have unsettled the motorcycle which started the chain of events.
"There were no mechanical defects with the bike, it was in a good state of repair and there were no contributing environmental factors."
PC Barlow said Mr Spinks was wearing a crash helmet and “good quality” motorcycle clothing and boots.
He also confirmed loose chippings at the side of the road and some damp patches did not play a part in the collision.
Drivers Sean Davis and Nicola Ogden also gave evidence.
Mr Davis, who was driving a white truck, said after Mr Spinks overtook the car in front of him, driven by Miss Ogden, the motorbike started “snaking along and veering to the left”.
Miss Ogden, who was driving a blue Vauxhall car, said: “I could see the bike was wobbling as soon as he got in front of me.
“It looked like he was trying to fight the bike. There was a lot of wobbling, shaking and then it veered towards the pavement.”
Both drivers said Mr Spinks appeared to try to jump off the bike before he struck the lamp post.
Mr Spinks was declared dead at the scene. A post mortem examination found he died of multiple injuries and deputy Essex Coroner, Eleanor McGann, said he died as a result of an accident.
A number of family members were at the hearing at Newbridge House, in Chelmsford, including Mr Spinks’ dad, Kevin, mum, Cheryl, and sister Stacey.
After the verdict his heartbroken mum, 56, from Basildon, spoke to the Echo.
She said: “We can now draw a line under what was a tragic accident. It will never bring him back.
“The verdict is what we expected. You want a reason for it, but it was just a really bad accident.”
Before he died, Mr Spinks had been planning to emigrate to the US with his American fiancee, Kirsli Spinks, who happened to share the same surname.