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Unlicensed biker died while drunk

PUBLISHED: 03:36 26 September 2002 | UPDATED: 12:43 03 March 2010

UNLICENSED motorcyclist Daniel Martin died after losing control of his bike and smashing into a road sign while over the legal alcohol limit.

An inquest into Mr Martin's death heard the 32-year-old kitchen fitter, of Winchester Way, Ipswich, had never passed a motorbike test.

By JON TUNNEY

jon.tunney@eveningstar.co.uk

UNLICENSED motorcyclist Daniel Martin died after losing control of his bike and smashing into a road sign while over the legal alcohol limit.

An inquest into Mr Martin's death heard the 32-year-old kitchen fitter, of Winchester Way, Ipswich, had never passed a motorbike test.

The court also heard the father-of-one was over the legal alcohol limit and had the wrong tyres on his bike when he crashed in London Road, near the Copdock roundabout on July 17.

Mr Martin's girlfriend Natalie Chapman had tried to persuade him not to buy the bike, according to her statement read out at the inquest.

She thought the couple could not afford the £600 he borrowed from his brother to buy the bike just a few weeks before it cost him his life.

Reading out pathology reports, Greater Suffolk and East Essex Coroner Dr Peter Dean told Mr Martin's family his death would have been near-instantaneous.

He said the multiple injuries to Mr Martin's neck and chest would have killed him almost immediately.

Dr Dean also read out interviews with other motorists at the scene. They all reported good driving conditions, but estimates of Mr Martin's speed ranged from 40mph to 90mph.

Suffolk Police accident investigation expert Pc Kevin Stark said it was impossible to for him to judge speed from examining the scene.

No-one saw the crash, but several reported seeing Mr Martin struggling to control his Honda CVR 600 as it strayed into a roadside verge.

Dr Dean said Mr Martin was seen about 5ft off the ground as he flew off the bike, which carried on across the carriageway before careering down an embankment into the PC World car park.

Pc Stark said when he examined the stricken bike, he immediately noticed it had inappropriate tyres for the type of machine.

He said the fact they were too large for the bike and set to the wrong pressure could have led to

Mr Martin's handling problems.

Investigations at the scene revealed Mr Martin had almost certainly veered across the road and clipped the central reservation before hitting the road sign.

Earlier, Dr Dean read statements from Mr Martin's parents Leonard and Sandra.

Both of them reported their son had suffered from ups and downs.

But dad Leonard said it was a shame the accident had happened as it seemed his son was finally getting his life on track.

The coroner recorded a verdict of accidental death.

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