Moped rider Lewis Crouch 'was performing u-turn' when hit by car, inquest hears

This post first appeared on Nottingham Post. Read the original article.

A teenager moped rider died on his favourite stretch of road after leaving a Facebook message: "Going for a bike ride, see you later."

Lewis Crouch, 16, might have pulled out in front of a car seconds after another vehicle had passed a lay-by on the country lane, an inquest heard.

Police constable Stephen Farrell, who investigated the collision, said Philip Reid's car might have been "masked" by the other vehicle, which was a few seconds in front of him on February 3.

His police report concluded that the incident was "chiefly attributable to the inexperienced of riding of Mr Crouch". Lewis had started riding a moped in previous August.

When questioned by Emily Wilsdon for Lewis's family, the officer said there was "no evidence of loss of control by Mr Reid".

Police evidence suggested that Lewis might have been carrying out a U-turn and that Mr Reid could not have avoided an impact.

PC Farrell added: "The physical evidence entirely supports the premise that Lewis was performing this turn when the collision occurred."

Lewis Crouch died on Peafield Lane in February this year

Lewis Crouch died on Peafield Lane in February this year

Nottingham Coroner Mairin Casey paid tribute to Lewis after concluding that he "died following a road traffic collision".

She told his bereaved family: "It is clear Lewis was a very lovable and much loved young man. I well understand this is something that will be incredibly difficult for you to bear in the months and years to come."

The hearing was told that Lewis broke both joints in his right thumb when his moped fell on him in the January snow. He was unable to ride while his hand was in plaster.

On the day before his death, a splint was specially made to help the joints heal. The hearing was told that advice was given that he should not ride his moped or play computer games until this was removed by hospital staff.

Lewis's mother Cheryl Broughton was with him at King's Mill Hospital. She could not recall that medical warning and told the hearing: "He came out of the hospital and was very excited about getting his motorbike back. He was making motorbike noises he was so excited."

Driver Mr Reid told the hearing that he tried to avoid the collision on Peafield Lane , Mansfield Woodhouse. He noticed the car in front pulled towards the centre of the road and he did the same.

Lewis with mum Cheryl

Lewis with mum Cheryl

He believed the moped rider was on the edge of a layby and told the inquest: "As I was pulling out, he did a U-turn. The motorbike pulled out as I went past it."

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The coroner asked if he felt the collision could have been avoided if had kept going straight on, instead of pulling towards the centre of the road.

Mr Reid replied: "I don't think so, no."