Car fan's death was accidental

A CAR enthusiast died after he lost control of his modified Fiat Punto and crashed on a rural Suffolk road.

A CAR enthusiast died after he lost control of his modified Fiat Punto and crashed on a rural Suffolk road.

An inquest heard that Shaun Ruddy suffered massive head injuries in the accident, including a fractured skull, and was pronounced dead at the scene.

The 25-year-old window fitter, of Ellenbrook Road, Ipswich, had been driving along Lower Road in Somersham on September 24 last year when the single-vehicle accident took place.

Another motorist who witnessed the crash told police he had been following Mr Ruddy prior to the collision.

In a statement read by coroner Dr Peter Dean, the witness said Mr Ruddy had been driving at around 40mph in a 30mph zone when the tragedy occurred.

As his car negotiated a left-hand bend, it struck the verge, overturned and came to rest in a ditch.

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Mr Ruddy, who has a twin brother, was pulled from his car by fire crews before paramedics made unsuccessful attempts to revive him.

The inquest, which took place at Ipswich police station, heard how Mr Ruddy had spent hours painstakingly modernising his prized car.

Some of that work had involved replacing the suspension springs to lower the vehicle, making it able to manoeuvre around corners more easily.

It also emerged that a police examination of the car found that its gas-filled shock absorbers were corroded and ineffective.

In recording a verdict of accidental death, coroner Dr Dean said Mr Ruddy's injuries meant it was unlikely he felt any pain.

After Mr Ruddy's death, dozens of tributes were left on a special Facebook group dedicated to him.

Kate Dixon wrote: “You were one of life's good guys and were tragically taken away from us. I'm going to miss you like mad.”

Tony Didcock added: “RIP Shaun. We will miss you, stepbrother.”

Scarlett Smith said: “You will be missed by all of us. There will always be a place in my heart for a lovely cousin like you…keep smiling.

Kasse Belet, 18, of Ellenbrook Green, said: “He loved his car, but the saddest thing is that his death was caused by his car.”

Pay tribute to Shaun Ruddy - write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail

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